The words ‘hyperfocal distance’ sound hyper complicated, don’t they? The good news is that hyperfocal distance isn’t as difficult as you might think. It’s also really useful, especially when it comes to landscape photos, because it’s about getting as much of your scene in focus as possible. So let’s dive into hyperfocal distance: what it is, how to calculate it, and when and why to use it.
Having the scene focused front to back is one of the very important aspects of landscape photography. But more often than not, it’s pretty tricky to achieve it. In this video, Mads Peter Iversen shares some very useful tips and techniques for landscape photographers. They will help you get the entire scene in focus and achieve perfect front-to-back focus in every scenario.
Although not all of us like math and numbers, we need to know some technical stuff in order to be as efficient as possible when taking photos and videos. One of such technical concepts is hyperfocal distance, and it makes a lot of people scratch their heads. John P. Hess of Filmmaker IQ talks about it in his latest video.
He doesn’t only explain what hyperfocal distance is, but teaches you how to calculate it, how to set it on different lenses and cameras, and how to use it to improve your photography or videos. And don’t worry, you won’t need to calculate the hyperfocal distance manually – John also recommends some apps you can use to do it for you.
I often get the feeling that photography is talked and written about as if its practitioners have an innate knowledge of the terms involved. Any craft or profession comes with its own specialist language, but if you’re new to it—and even if you’re not—you can often feel overwhelmed by the terminology, let alone the technicalities of the medium. Thinking back ‘hyperfocal distance’ is one of the terms that most baffled me.
You will most likely hear ‘hyperfocal distance’ mentioned in relation to landscape photography. It describes a mathematically calculated sweet-spot that, when you focus there, maximises the depth-of-field across your scene. For, while you might believe that using a small aperture and focusing at infinity would do the job, it doesn’t.