So I’ve been shooting with my new Nikon 19mm tilt shift and I’m already wondering why it took me so long to invest.
I can confirm: it’s all it’s cracked up to be.
There are two things I can do now that I couldn’t before, or were a pain to do in post-production. The shot above is a stitch using the shift function – just two images. I’ve learned to shoot in horizontal format from top to bottom or vice-versa – just two shots; no middle shot necessary.
Before this lens, I avoided stitching like the plague. It was a lot of work and often the image had parallax issues. I am a proud non-owner of complicated nodal gear. Time is always of the essence! There were very slight anomalies but nothing that couldn’t be fixed in a jiffy. I love the fact that I am no longer frustrated by the limitations of my wide-angle lenses, and at 19mm there is next-to-no distortion. On a recent assignment I foolishly shot in vertical format 4-5 shots, and the stitch worked but was all over the place in terms of perspective etc. I had to use perspective warp in CS to save the shot. Two horizontal shots would have made life simpler!
The second reason I love the lens is that you have a much finer control over the perspective of the image.
See the first image below. I like to shoot from a higher viewpoint, where possible, to allow the eye to ‘walk through’ the image while eliminating much of the space normally taken up by boring ceilings. This is so easy to do with the shift – just get into position and shift down. I was amazed by how far you can shift in either direction.
Another bonus is edge sharpness: no more blurry edges. I am now shooting the vast majority of my images with this lens.