Sequence viewing > Index - Cameras - lenses - optics - Resource - © Lloyd Godman

Film - Digital

View Camera



We already know light travels in a straight line and is bent by the lens to enable the image to be focused at the film plane.  Also the effect of depth-of-field


The near and front limits of the depth-of-field area in a scene are usually determined by lines parallel to the film plane.  When the subject plane and the film plane are parallel, which occurs when the camera is aimed directly at a wall enough depth-of-field to render the whole scene may be obtained by using a wide aperture.
When the film plane and the subject plane are not parallel to each other, which occurs with any subject that recedes from the camera, a smaller aperture may be used to give more depth-of-field and include the important elements in the scene in sharp focus.

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If a view camera is used, the depth of field lines can be actually rotated until they align themselves more closely with the subject plane.  This principle is summarized in the scheimpflug rule, which states that a subject will be rendered with the greatest sharpness when the imaginary lines drawn from the subject plane, the film plane, and the lens board plane, all meet at a common point.  This happens when two or more of these planes are rotated so that they intersect at a common point above, below, or to the side of the camera. 

Consequently a shorter exposure time can be used or the depth-of-field can be extended.




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