Exercise – Focus With A Set Aperture

This exercise required the taking of several photos of the same scene at varying aperture settings. I chose a nearby Buddhist stupa that had a number of prayers wheels aligned in a way that would give useful results. I elected not to use a tripod for this series of photos, and I mounted a Nikkor AF-S 50mm lens on the camera. Aperture was set at its’ widest; f/1.8

First photo – near focus point:

511682-intro-E2-NearFocus

Second photo – mid-focus point:

511682-intro-E2-MidFocus

Third photo – far focus point:

511682-intro-E2-FarFocus

Of the three photos I prefer the one with the closest focus point. I think in an image like this, where there are several instances of a particular object or subject in view, a close focus point shows quite clearly what that subject actually is, and the detail on it is very discernable. Your eye is drawn immediately to the first prayer wheel, and then moves deeper into the image. Because the first wheel is in sharp focus, and given the very wide aperture setting, the last prayer wheel is deeply out of focus, or blurry, which is more pleasing to the eye. Whereas a mid-focus point only allows a somewhat milder blur quality to the first and last wheels.

Link to higher resolution TIFF image files

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