PRO GUIDE TO SHARPER LANDSCAPES
With high-resolution sensors exposing every flaw in technique, sharpness is now more important than ever. Learn how to ensure maximum sharpness in your imagery
Produce your sharpest landscapes with our pro guide from Mark Bauer
successful landscape photography has always placed a lot of emphasis on detail and sharpness. however, with the introduction of modern high-resolution sensors, sharpness and the techniques needed to achieve it have become increasingly important.
so what contributes towards image sharpness? equipment obviously has a bearing on this, starting with your choice of camera. sensor size has an effect, as does sensor design – for example, if there is an anti-aliasing filter in front of the sensor, this will cause a degree of softness. Lenses also have a significant impact. it used to be the case that primes were noticeably sharper than zoom lenses, but in recent years some exceptionally good zoom lenses have been made available. however, good lenses don’t come cheap – spending a little bit more will usually result in more quality. the good news is that the most useful lenses for landscapes are wide angles, which are considerably less expensive than telephotos. Moreover, using a suitable tripod and head are as important as camera and lens choice.
how you control depth of field – via your choice of aperture and where you focus – also impacts upon the sharpness of your images, and choice of aperture is also important in controlling optical aberrations such as diffraction, which can result in softness. to be fully in control of sharpness, you will also need to master more advanced techniques, such as focus stacking and using tilt-shift lenses.