Cinema 4D / BodyPaint 3D Program Documentation Tutorials Camera and Render Settings Tutorial
Function available in CINEMA 4D Prime, Visualize, Broadcast, Studio & BodyPaint 3D

Selecting the correct angle of view

As we learned in the segment about Depth of Field, the beholder has been trained or has become accustomed to reaching certain conclusions about a scene depending on how it is presented. If, for example, an image has more blurred/out of focus regions than those in focus, the motif will look like a miniature model. This is because our eyes are trained to view objects at a distance of about three meters in focus. The depth of field effect should therefore be used discreetly and in a manner befitting the scene. The exception to this rule is of course the use of depth of field to create visual or special effects.

Similar rules apply to the positioning of the camera in order to achieve the correct angle of view. The fact that a camera can be placed so freely may seduce you to set up unusual angles of view. This is often done in advertising in order to get the viewer’s attention. This is demonstrated in the image below. The camera has been set up to view the car from a very high angle. Furthermore, the scene is missing other points of reference such as people or background objects. Hence, we have no real idea of the actual scale of the car - which in itself is enough to automatically make us assume that this is a small object, e.g., a model car. The larger focal width reinforces this impression because it lends the object even less perspective distortion.

As the next image shows, the scene takes on a whole new look once the camera is positioned at eye level. The focal width was also modified to around 35 mm as it would be in the real world, which amplifies the perspective distortion. Now the car makes a much more natural impression with regard to its scale even though supporting elements such as people or background objects are still missing.

Of course the above-mentioned positioning is only an example but when presenting free-standing objects in particular you should position your camera in direct relation to the actual size of your object to make it look more convincing.