Tilt shift lenses are used for far more than simply making cities look like they were shot as miniatures. They allow you to correct for perspective distortion. They also let you shift the focal plane to get subjects at different distances in focus and a whole lot more. You don’t get quite the versatility that you would from the movements of a large format camera, but they’re a start.
Of course, the miniature effect in recent years (whether shot in camera, done in post, or applied in Instagram) has made tilt shift lenses quite popular. In this video from LensProToGo, we’re walked through the features of tilt-shift lenses, and exactly how they do what they do.