Easy Peasy Zone Focusing

5

Want to shoot from the hip and get most of you photos in focus without making it obvious you are shooting? Want to learn what the marking on the lens mean? I'll tell you.

David tried to teach me this technique in January. It’s taken me this long for the concept to click into my brain. Ok can’t help being a little slow.
Zone focusing is a phrase that is tossed around quite often but how do you do it?? Here I have tried to make it simple using my old Smena 2 Camera. It works on all cameras with the Distance and aperture markings on the lens or body.

There are a few methods of Zone Focusing, one being mathematics… Hmmm I can’t do the double wavy symbol but it looks sorta like this
H~ f2/Nc
where N is the lens f stop,
f is the focal length and c is the circle of confusion.

Ok too hard already at we can use a search engine to look up the circle of confusion for each camera… But who wants to? This is lomography don’t think just shoot.

Next method is to use the numbers on your lens.
I have a Cmena 2 and so will use this old lady to try to show you. ( I was going to use a zorki-C but the numbers are so very tiny that you would never see them)

1.Look at your lens and set it to infinity focus. I had the Cmena set to f/11 so let’s use that. At infinity focus, f/11 has a close to depth of field ( or near to) of 4.5m ( on this camera, your may be different. A 50mm may be closer to 6m)
This is handy, but my husband and child are sitting closer than 4.5m away .. What to do?

(A little hard to see but infinity is set to f/11)

2. We must increase our close to DOF to do that, we move the infinity to the f/11 mark on the focus ring. So now the camera shows me that the focus is set to 4.8m this is the hyperfocal distance of this lens. Now, looking at the f/11 marking on either side of the lens, you see 2.2m and infinity.
This means that everything within 2.2m to infinity will be in acceptable focus.

Credits: woosang

Of course something close to the boundary, at the 2.2m mark, will probably be out of focus to try to not have your focal point close to the end of the limits of the zone. Also with very old cameras the distances may not be accurate but this system works for all cameras with a scale.

Let’s try f4.5 on this lens

1. Set to infinity and see that f/4.5 reads just over 10.2m
So is we left it here, everything over 10.2m will be in focus huh that’s far away…

Credits: woosang

2.now move the infinity to f/4.5 and read the hyperfocal distance which is almost exactly 10m wow! That’s still far but the other end of the scale reads 5m that’s better

Credits: woosang

So for the Cmena 2 at f/4.5 the zone of in focus is 5m to infinity with the sharpest focus being 10m

Credits: woosang
Credits: woosang

So once you set your aperture, and set your zone, don’t touch it and shoot from the hip. You can now raise your camera and shoot without worrying about setting it up. Good for street photography.
If you wish to adjust your exposure just use your shutter speed. :-) This of course will give you acceptable focus only and this peters out as you approach the boundaries of the zone.

To get pinsharp.. we move into digital.. and we don’t wanna do that do we???

any questions leave me a message :-)

written by woosang on 2011-05-30 in #gear #tipster #street-photography #camera #ho-to #tutorialfocusing-old-cameras-lens-marking-hyperfocal #zone-focusing

5 Comments

  1. wuxiong
    wuxiong ·

    To make things simple: the farther the distance you set, or the smaller the aperture you set, then it means the more DOF you achieve, The more likely you shoot your subject in focus when you act fast like hip shooting. Very practical article...<:)

  2. simon-hedge
    simon-hedge ·

    Good article. And I like that Smena 2 as well!

  3. woosang
    woosang ·

    @wuxioug Yes :-)
    @simon-hedge thanks

  4. ahleng90
    ahleng90 ·

    cool :) thanks for sharing this

  5. tetrahexadecabyte
    tetrahexadecabyte ·

    Very useful !
    I have a Smena 1 and the only thing i didnt knew how to use was the focus.
    Actually most of my photos are out of focus.

    Thanks !

More Interesting Articles

  • Petzval Photography: A Philosophy, According to Michael Fiukowski

    written by zonderbar on 2015-07-26 in #people #lomoamigos
    Petzval Photography: A Philosophy, According to Michael Fiukowski

    For Michael Fiukowski, taking photos with the New Petzval 85 Art Lens is a philosophy. The manual focus encourages him to be more experimental, and when shooting portraits, he seeks for creative ways to position his subject and make the most of the Petzval's bokeh effect. He finds the lens fascinating, and tells us why.

    1
  • Perfect Combination for a Hazy Day: Lomo LC-A and a Pushed Ilford HP5+

    written by sirio174 on 2015-05-06 in #gear #reviews
    Perfect Combination for a Hazy Day: Lomo LC-A and a Pushed Ilford HP5+

    In this article, I'll show you how the Lomo LC-A loaded with the versatile Ilford HP5+ can make the most out of a hazy morning. To capture the whirlwind of a bicycle race, I pushed the film to ISO 800. The legendary Minitar 1 lens and this classic Ilford film are a perfect combination if you love black and white photos.

    1
  • Photo Stories: Isolation by disdis

    written by Julien Matabuena on 2015-08-03 in #world #locations
    Photo Stories: Isolation by disdis

    What do you do when you want to get away from it all? Here, disdis tells us one of the things he does—that is, to head to somewhere faraway and simply lose himself in it.

  • Shop News

    Shoot recognizable images with the Petzval

    Shoot recognizable images with the Petzval

    You want your subject be the center of attention? Petzval lens photos are recognizable for sharpness and crispness in the centre, strong color saturation, wonderful swirly bokeh effect, artful vignettes and narrow depth of field that will make your subjects stand out!

  • The New Petzval Lens Is Now Available For Regular Purchase!

    written by tomas_bates on 2014-08-14 in #news
    The New Petzval Lens Is Now Available For Regular Purchase!

    The day has finally come! We are very excited to tell you that you can now order the Lomography New Petzval Lens for immediate delivery from the Online Shop or purchase it in your hands at Gallery Stores. To put full focus on our favorite portrait lens, soon we will be hosting special launch parties in our Gallery stores all over the globe! So do not miss an opportunity to become part of the sensational New Petzval Lens family today.

    1
  • Taking Back Tipsters: DIY Pinhole Cameras

    written by Julien Matabuena on 2015-04-25 in #gear #tipster
    Taking Back Tipsters: DIY Pinhole Cameras

    Tomorrow, April 26, marks World Pinhole Photography Day, and what better way to celebrate the occasion by taking your favorite pinhole camera out on an analog adventure? Or if you don't have one yet, you can make one yourself from scratch! Here are five innovative Tipsters from the community for you to peruse.

  • A Collection Of Awesome Konstruktor Snapshots

    written by shhquiet on 2015-04-10 in #gear #lifestyle
    A Collection Of Awesome Konstruktor Snapshots

    There's nothing more satisfying than taking fantastic photos with a camera that you built yourself. If you've always wanted to impress your friends with your mad DIY skills, pick up a Konstruktor Camera Kit and show them what you've got! It's also a cool way to get them into Lomography, because as you build the camera you'll discover how analogue photography works. Oh, and the Konstruktor takes gorgeous photos, too - check out the gallery and see what we mean!

    6
  • Shop News

    Try the LomoLAB Development Service!

    Try the LomoLAB Development Service!

    Whatever kind of film development you're after, you'll find it here! Now you can confidently shoot from the hip without having to worry where to develop those film rolls!

  • How to Make Special Aperture Plates for Your Petzval Lens, Halloween Edition

    written by jillytanrad on 2014-10-29 in #gear #tipster
    How to Make Special Aperture Plates for Your Petzval Lens, Halloween Edition

    Halloween fever is in full swing. Everything ghostly, scary or freakishly extraordinary are either on display or being spoken of in hushed voices through spine-chilling tales. Apart from wearing the scariest costumes and taking photos of of your petrifying selves, why not amplify the Halloween spirit a notch higher by using Halloween-themed aperture plates with the New Petzval Lens? Here's a quick tipster that'll teach you how to make special aperture plates and make the most out of them this Halloween!

  • October Walks and Workshops

    written by hannah_brown on 2014-09-22 in #events
    October Walks and Workshops

    Lomography Gallery Store Soho has all the workshops you could ever want this October. Learn the basics of the Diana F+, shoot autumn colours with the Lubitel 166+, make your own redscale film, shoot creepy portraits with the Petzval lens and visit our One Must Dash Pop up store. Read on for a full line- up of events and details.

  • Make Loading Your Horizon Camera Much Easier with This Simple Tip

    written by alienmeatsack on 2014-12-10 in #gear #tipster
    Make Loading Your Horizon Camera Much Easier with This Simple Tip

    Do you love taking photos with your Horizon panoramic camera, but loading the film makes you crazy? Try this tipster to make your favorite Horizon or similar swing lens camera a joy to load and shoot.

    2
  • Shop News

    Diana Mini and Flash Petite Noire at 25% off

    Diana Mini and Flash Petite Noire at 25% off

    At 25% off you can take dreamy 35mm images with this little black beauty. Beam coloured light into your shots with its accompanying Diana Flash Back accessory and be the analogue king of the night.

  • Sumptuous New Squares: Take a Peek at these Latest LC-A 120 Snaps!

    written by tomas_bates on 2014-09-26 in #lifestyle
    Sumptuous New Squares: Take a Peek at these Latest LC-A 120 Snaps!

    It's been a little while since we've shared the latest shots taken with the brand new LC-A 120 with you. But that just means we have a fantastic collection to show you today! Our testers from around the world have been shooting from the hip and with the heart to capture their daily lives with this medium format master. Skip past the jump to spy into some Lomographic lives!

    1
  • A Hodgepodge of Snaps Made With Pinhole Cameras

    written by bgaluppo on 2015-04-13 in #gear #lifestyle
    A Hodgepodge of Snaps Made With Pinhole Cameras

    Have you tried shooting pinhole before? This early method of photography requires longer exposure times and is perfect for creative experiments.Who needs a lens?! Forget the viewfinder and standard techniques — you'll get amazing and unpredictably soft-focused snapshots. Go old-school and check out this showcase of pinhole photos our fellow Lomographers have taken!

    1
  • Creative Ways to Shoot the Lomography LomoChrome Purple Film

    written by Robn Kester on 2015-03-03 in #gear #tipster
    Creative Ways to Shoot the Lomography LomoChrome Purple Film

    The LomoChrome Purple is easily one of the coolest films to come out in a very long time. The amazing colors and vibe it gives each shot and its wide range of exposures make it a must-have and must-shoot film. Here are some cool ways to help you get the most out of your LCP.

    7