• 1:28

    With landscape photography, the accepted standard is to ensure that everything in the picture frame appears to be in sharp focus. This raises the question that is most vexing to landscape photographers: Where do you focus your lens to get everything in focus? In this mini-course, world-renowned professional photographer Ian Plant explains everything you need…

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  • 9:36

    You are a budding landscape photographer, but you’re struggling with image sharpness, keeping all the elements in focus from near to far. In this mini-course, world-renowned professional photographer Ian Plant shows you how to focus your lens to hold sharpness for everything in your frame. This technique is called hyperfocal distance, and it’s the key to creating quality landscape images.

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  • 2:25

    Landscape photographers are always trying to take the guess work out of finding the optical focal point in their compositions. In this mini-course, photographer Ian Plant shows you how to use live view to achieve that goal. You will learn to use the depth of field preview button to freeze your focal point on the LCD screen. You can then zoom in to check sharpness on the foreground and the background. In other words, live view aids in previewing your focus points before you capture the composition. An alternate method is to make test shots and check each one for sharpness from near to far.

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  • 6:52

    In the modern world of digital imaging, landscape photographers are pushing the envelope, getting lower and closer to the scene in order to make the image exaggerated and larger but still perfectly sharp. These are extreme, wide angle compositions where you may run into problem issues such as depth of field, hyperfocal distance, and field curvature. In this session, Ian Plant gives you tips on how use an extreme, wide angle lens to capture a sharp, near-far composition. This technique is called focus stacking.

    The Basics of Focus Stacking

    Focus stacking consists of taking multiple exposures of the same scene but at different focus points. Later in post production, you blend these exposures together to achieve your final photograph. From a very low angle, Ian composes an image of a colorful rock formation in the Badlands of South Dakota. Using live view, he starts his focus stacking on the lower corners of the composition, then, with each subsequent exposure, moves the focal point further out from near to far. He brackets eleven exposures at these various focal points. To avoid diffraction, he prefers to shoot each one at f-11.

    Next, Ian takes you into the edit suite and blends all his images together through focus stacking. Although Adobe Photoshop offers a stacking software program, Ian uses a dedicated software called Helicon Focus. He imports the eleven exposures into the program, and the software blends them together through mapping and figures out the sharpest zone of focus for each image. Ian adds a few simple retouching techniques, then brings the blended file into Photoshop for careful checking. The final result is a remarkable landscape photograph in perfect focus from foreground to background. Join pro shooter Ian Plant and discover how to create a wide angle landscape image through focus stacking.

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