Focal lengths and different viewpoints

This exercise involves taking two shots of the same subject filling the frame – one with a telephoto (zoom) lens and one with a wide-angle lens.  The objective is to look at how perspective is altered by taking different viewpoints with each lens.

The subject I chose was a bridge over Rochdale canal.

The first photo, using the telephoto:

Focal length and viewpoint - Telephoto

The second photo, using the wide-angle:

Focal length and viewpoint - Wide Angle
Straight away there is an alteration in perspective because of a rather obvious limitation in getting the bridge to fill the frame; I wasn’t on a boat so I had to approach on the tow path.

Comparing the shots, the first does give a sense of distance from the bridge while the second does feel notably closer.   Comparing items within the scene however, the lock gates feel much closer to the entrance to the bridge than in the second – where they are very much a distant element of the scene.  Essentially the first shot feels much ‘flatter’ while the second has much more depth and the canal present lines of interest.

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