Friday, 27 March 2009

Aspect Ratios

I have books from the 1970s that I have kept because the artistic side of photography is still relevant in this technological age. However many of the cameras or darkroom skills can be reproduced on the computer, and a lot of time can be saved in the process. I still use the camera for some effects. I may focus on something in the foreground and control depth of field to make sure that this is the only object in focus. However it is safer to let the computer do it. After all, you may want everything to be in focus.

Have you ever thought about the size of photographic prints? Well start by thinking about the size of the film, because if you want to make full use of your film then the photo has to be in the same proportion. A standard 35mm film is actually 36mm x 24mm. Finding the lowest common denominator then the ration (termed 'aspect ratio') is 3:2. When things went digital there were many manufacturers who produced sensors that had the same ratio as film. The same ratio happens to be the basic size of photo prints that you get on the high street, 6"x 4". If you have a print with any other ratio then you have to lose some of the original photo. It is cropped out to make the proportion that you want. I tend to use Olympus cameras and one reason for this is that their aspect ratio is 4:3. In other words you make full use of the sensor with 8"x 6" photos.

Happy snapping

No comments:

Post a Comment