How Perspective Affects Your Photos

Ansel Adams once said, “A good photograph is knowing where to stand.” But, before you know where to stand, it’s important to understand a few concepts about perspective.

I’ve written about perspective here on PhotoNaturalist a few times, but I’ve also written a couple posts about it over at the Digital Photography School (a great blog that covers all types of photography). And, one of those posts was just published today, so I thought it’d be good to put a list together of all the posts I’ve written about perspective:

Sometimes Close-ups Are Better From Far Away – with an example that shows how you get more control of your background if you move farther away from your subject.

Why You Need a Telephoto Lens for Landscape Photography – with an example that shows how you can manipulate the relative sizes of objects in your image, and how those different sizes communicate different feelings.

Understanding Perspective and Focal Length – a short introduction to perspective, and an overview of what types of lenses are generally used to capture different perspectives.

How to Create Intimate Portraits of Nature – with an example of how the height of your camera affects the feeling of your photos.

3 Reasons to Photograph Wildlife at Eye Level – how perspective affects the feeling and background of your wildlife portraits.

Sometimes the View is Better From Above – how the height of your camera affects the feeling you communicate in landscape photographs.

And, for even more information about how perspective affects your photos, I highly recommend reading the chapter “Basic Image Management” in Ansel Adams’ great book, The Camera.

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steveb2About the Author: Steve Berardi is a naturalist, photographer, computer scientist, and founder of PhotoNaturalist. You can usually find him hiking in the beautiful mountains and deserts of Southern California.


  1. frank garvan says:

    good read

  2. hugh breyer says:

    My question is this: I want to understand the concept of hyperfocal shooting. Don’t quite understand it.
    Is there a site or can you teach it to me?

  3. @hugh – I haven’t written any tutorials on hyperfocal distance yet, but I keep getting asked about it, so I’m moving it towards the top of my to do list! So, watch for an article on it in the next few weeks 🙂

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