|The wide angle view from a couple of feet away.|
How big is the yard? I can make it look spacious or cramped by choosing where I stand and how I set my zoom lens.
Most cameras come with zoom lenses. For the most part, I think people zoom in or out to help with composition, or just to avoid moving. The zoom lens doesn't just get you closer or farther from your subject, it also has an effect on perspective.
If you carefully look at the three photos in this post, you'll notice the tree is (almost) the same size in each. But look at the difference in the photo backgrounds.
The photo featured at the top of the article was taken with the lens zoomed out to its widest setting. (15mm) That's a very wide setting. I was standing very close to the tree. Close enough to reach out and touch it. The wide angle lens exaggerates distances between objects making the yard look very large and including quite a bit of the neighborhood and sky.
|The mid-zoom view from the middle of the street.|
The last photo was taken with the lens zoomed in to its telephoto setting. (About 100mm) I had to stand on the sidewalk across the street for this photo. Now we don't even see the whole house, and the yard looks even smaller.
|The telephoto view from across the street.|
Here's a link to an entertaining demonstration that shows how choosing your lens setting can dramatically effect the look of people in your photos.
I encourage you to experiment with your zoom lens the next time you take photos. You'll be surprised at how different your photos look when you pay attention to perspective.