Don't Focus And Recompose

I’m a "focus-then-recompose" kind of guy. This is not good. I always sensed I was neglecting some fairly robust camera focusing technology by falling back on this old-school approach, but it wasn’t until I read this DPS blog post by James Brandon that I realized just how woefully inadequate this technique really is. Focusing then recomposing is the technique in which you point the center focus point in your viewfinder at the subject you want to photograph—say, an eye on a smiling face—and then (once focused properly) you recompose to create the composition that’s most pleasing. The problem with this approach becomes visible in a few specific instances: at larger apertures, when working with longer lenses, and when you’re a generally unsteady photographer. When you recompose you can actually change the distance between the focused point and your camera, meaning that the new plane of focus is actually behind the original (correct) one. That means that if your lens is long enough, your aperture large enough or your depth of field shallow enough, you’re going to get an out-of-focus picture. See for yourself at the DPS blog, then get started—as I am—learning how to focus correctly using shifting focus points. 

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