Toecabulary: Fisheye lens

Toecabulary: Fisheye lens

January 24, 2019
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Sometimes, a deliberate distortion can become a detail of aestheticism in art.

If you are a fan of wide-angle images, you are probably someone who will love how a fisheye lens warps the ultra-wide perspective for a more unique and dramatic effect than any other lens can achieve.

This works best when an image involves the magical presence of the horizon. When you begin envisioning an image by placing the horizon at the centre of the frame, based on your horizontal movement away from it renders the horizon line as a concave or convex curve. The amount of distortion is directly proportional to how farther you move away from the centre of the frame.

At the Arctic end of the world, a solitary polar bear traverses the sea dotted by scattered icecheets. On the horizon linger the last streaks of sunlight. And this fisheye perspective warps the edge of the Earth, the horizon to give it a breathtaking artistic effect:

A similar scene shot without a fisheye lens, like the following one, is evocative in its own way, but it simply establishes the lack of the unique perspective that only a fisheye can render to an image.

In the following image of a Masai tribe man facing the horizon looks like a story by itself. The horizon has been moved downwards from the centre of the frame, which gives it a concave effect, making it that much more surreal for a beholder.

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