Wednesday, September 27, 2006

I Just Learned Something!

I am sure someone just said "Well it's about bloody time!", or "Takes a little while for things to sink in at your age, doesn't it.", or perhaps "Have you thought that maybe school is not your thing?". Thank you for your support. What I learned today is that depth of field is not just controlled by aperture, as I had previously thought. Apparently lens focal length and distance to subject also affect depth of field. Who knew!

I am not complaining about my previous photography education (You don't have a thing to worry about there Mr. Mah, after all, you gave me an 'A'.), I am commenting on my own ingrained preconceptions. There were a lot of things Mr. Mah taught me twenty years ago, and while they are still true, I didn't go and educate myself any further. I assumed I knew it all. I have had the attitude, in some of my Introduction to Photojournalism classes, of someone who thought he was beyond all this. (In my defense, they did spend two weeks talking about the basics of exposure, and Mr. Mah taught me that really well.) I still have things to learn and I am glad I am here to learn them. I am also glad I was shown something I didn't know early on so I can loose my attitude problem. Or at least that aspect of my attitude problem.

Just so you know, this is the definition of depth of field as ripped off from Wikipedia ("ripped off" is the accepted style of reference at Loyalist College):
In optics, particularly film and photography, the depth of field (DOF) is the distance in front of and behind the subject which appears to be in focus. For any given lens setting, there is only one distance at which a subject is precisely in focus, but focus falls off gradually on either side of that distance, so there is a region in which the blurring is tolerable. This region is greater behind the point of focus than it is in front, as the angle of the light rays change more rapidly; they approach being parallel with increasing distance.
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