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How Does a Fisheye Lens Work?
To better understand how a fisheye lens works, we must first answer the question, “what is a fisheye lens?” A fisheye lens is an ultra wide-angle lens with a strong curvature resulting in bulging, distortion towards the edges, and exaggerated perspectives. They have a much more immersive view than wide-angle lenses and are excellent for creating effects that pull the viewer in.
Fisheye Lens Properties
Here are some general properties of fisheye lenses, features that set them apart, and design parameters.
- Its focal length is between 8mm and 15mm.
- It is usually compact and lightweight.
- They focus very closely.
- Video and photographs are clearer since the subject is usually in close range.
- It benefits the user with a large depth of field.
- Images come out as a circle.
Also read: What is an Art Lens?
Where to use a Fisheye Lens
Even though it is a specialty lens not meant for everyday use, there are still many scenarios where a fisheye lens would have the best video effect. Some of them include:
Due to the significant depth of field, sports like skateboarding and motocross use fisheye lenses so that the rider can be captured from all angles at once during spins.
Fisheye lenses can be used to show a comparison between the artist and their environment or to make a face more visible.
A fisheye lens is widely used when the user wants to create special effects in a movie. For example, looking through a peephole, security footage, or someone waking up.
In addition, another area where fisheye lenses can be used is during underwater shots. However, it is also important to note that fisheye lenses can be used according to a user’s specifications, regardless of shot category.
Part of the reasons why fisheye lenses are adept at underwater videography is because they allow a close-up focus, and there are few straight lines underwater.
A fisheye lens is non-rectilinear. Unlike other wide-angle lenses, a fisheye lens is designed to create a warped and spherical perception, while rectilinear lenses are all about straight lines.
Fisheye lenses can be zoomed; however, zooming can reduce the fisheye effect and make it look rectilinear.
A beginner asking the question “what is a fisheye lens?” needs to understand that fisheye lenses are not everyday camera lenses. Unless the niche is an ultra-wide angle, they require a specific use case for users to enjoy them best.
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- Videocide Blog. (June 3, 2021). ULTRA-WIDE ANGLE LENS. Retrieved from https://videocide.com/glossary/ultra-wide-angle-lens/
- Matt. (n.d). What Is a Fisheye Lens? Definition, Examples & How To Use Them. Retrieved from https://filmlifestyle.com/what-is-a-fisheye-lens/