The 'Normal' Lens Challenge

Snow, mountains, forests… The breath of Dracula down your neck. Well, maybe not vampires, but bears and wolves. Welcome to Romania.

Because you’re looking through a bit more atmosphere than you usually do with wide-angle lenses, 50mm is great for a shoot in the haze. Misty forests are excellent subjects and Toma Bonciu is no stranger to shooting in the eerie Carpathian mountains. Stretches of ancient woodland as far as the eye can see create a host of photographic opportunities. But what if you were only allowed to shoot at a midrange focal length?

Bonciu limits himself to the use of a 50mm lens in this video. That’s a great challenge to try for yourself, because it forces you to get creative with the things you see with your own eyes. With telephoto lenses it’s rather easy to hone in on a detailed piece of the landscape and abstract an image from it. And the funky converging lines effect of an ultra-wide is without a doubt one of the most seen technical tools of landscape photographers. So without the optics doing something creative to a scene, it’s up to you to show us what you see.

I really love his third shot, which leads the eye beautifully along the tree line and up into the mountains were the fog rises to finally connect with the sky.

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4 Comments

Ray Hardy's picture

I woulnt want to be the guy who finds the gopro with footage of a crazy guy jumping on and falling through the ice. just sayin'
cool project, I'm jealous of the location.

Chris Johnson's picture

I thought this was just called being broke :(

D O Pandurasu's picture

Great job, beautiful location. What about using the 50mm to create a medium sensor or a panorama photo by shooting multiple photos and stitching them together in Lightroom or Photoshop?