Distorted 3D-Scanned Faces Are the Stuff Nightmares Are Made Of


Lee Griggs' haunting 3D scans barely look human anymore.


The canvas that is the 3D-scanned human body offers some wild visual experiences, from 3D-printed Paul McCartneys to video game avatars that look just like you, but few are as uncanny as Lee Griggs' warped digital busts. "I guess I enjoy distorting the human face," Griggs tells The Creators Project about his new, face-melting image series, Deformations. "I like to blur the boundaries between the real and the surreal, I suppose."

"Blur" is a bit of an understatement for these distorted 3D scans, which Griggs downloads from production house Ten 24 and renders in Arnold for Maya. "I feel like I'm at the early stages still with this new project," he says, despite the slew of distorted human visages in his portfolio, from the early alien masks to the grotesque textural experiments that have appeared since he started. "I think there is a lot more that can be done and I know Im going to have fun going there. My goal is to create images that are more complicated with detailed deformations and multiple layers."


The newest addition to Deformations, an ongoing series, is Blockhead, which you can see above. Check out the rest, each more artfully horrifying than the last, in the image selection below:


See the full set, and more of Griggs' work, on his website.

Swedish medieval armored combat



Swedish medieval armored combat yes it´s a sport and a training style and it´s different and sweaty.
Welcome to a different and medieval armored combat, it takes place at the Swedish sci-fi convention in Gothenburg 2017.

United Photo Press journalist Tommy Hammarsten hits a different group of people who have a different fighting and training style. They have armor in iron, helmets, swords and axes. This is no game they fight without holding back full contact.

"Behind me is a big crowd with great expectations, I think nobody really knows what's going to happen, the bells hit, and the game is now seconds with armor fighting now, full in a big mess. It hurts and shrinks in armor, those who lose a weapon get a new weapon to continue with."


The crowd applauds, and shouts well, a person takes home the battle, the others are on the side and watching.

In a few minutes everything is over, the crowd asks do not hurt to get a beat, no answer the coach we are well equipped to withstand everything.

I meet some of the guys in the team after the fight, he is sweaty but satisfied, we will soon ride and compete in Norway, he answers, okay good luck. United Photo Press has experienced a new and different sport S.M.A.C


Tommy Hammarsten 
United Photo Press 2017

How to Shoot Golden Hour Portraits That Require Less Editing


Spring is here; it’s a time for golden hour portraits and photographers to get excited about chasing the light in the creation of the killer photo. Many photographers love shooting during the Golden Hour especially due to its ability to deliver soft, golden light and to make a person’s skin tones look fantastic. When it comes to photographing people in traditional portrait settings, there’s something much more appealing about warmer lighting situations than cooler lighting. While cooler lighting surely has its place, warmer lighting is often much more flattering.

So if you want to go out there and create better golden hour photos, here’s how to do it while also spending less time in Lightroom or Capture One.


Using a Lens Hood: Yes or No?



I know, you’re probably looking at this tip and saying “Really?” When it comes to Golden Hour Portraiture though, your lens hood can mean a whole lot. You see, modern lenses arguably don’t need a lens hood when it comes to image creation. The coatings on the lens elements are enough to negate most effects from UV light and flare. But that’s if you want it negated.



Model: Natalie Margiotta

Admittedly, I really like flare. I think that it adds a special character to my images that lots of photographers don’t otherwise get. However, know that if you have flare and don’t use your lens hood that you’re going to get less details overall and sometimes even lose a bit of sharpness. To be fair though, the sharpness lost is negligible unless you plan specifically on pixel peeping your images.

Something else you can also do: try to angle your lens directly into the sun; but don’t do it for long though.
Variable NDs



Sometimes it can be a fantastic idea to use some sort of lens filter when shooting golden hour portraits. The reason for this is because certain filters like a variable ND filter or a polarizing filter can help with a variety of things. For example, this image above was shot with an STF lens–a smooth trans focus lens with what’s more or less an ND filter inside of it that makes the bokeh pop a bit more.

In certain situations if you’re trying to shoot with your lens wide open and at a lower ISO setting, your shutter speed still might not be able to kill all the ambient light in the scene. So Variable ND filters come into play. These filters let you cut down on excess light–think of them as another exposure parameter.




Pro Tip: the latest emulsions of Kodak Portra were designed to be scanned. We recommend Portra 400 more than almost anything else out there.

These come in real handy when shooting film. The ND filter cuts down overall on light if you’re in an area with a lot of saturation from the sun.
Pay Attention to Colors: Keep it to Three Primaries



One of the most basic tips that I tell everyone who wants to shoot golden hour portraits is to watch your colors during the golden hour. To begin with, portraits should really be limited to three major colors as a very general rule. Those colors are:
Skin tone
Wardrobe color (simple colors are sometimes best)
Background color (try to keep it as much into one tonality as possible.)

The reason why this makes shooting golden hour portraits easier is because the light changes and so sometimes what’s warm one second may be really cool another second. That brings us to our next big tip.
Where Exactly Are You Shooting?



ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS be aware of where you’re shooting and what you’re shooting. During the Golden Hour, some photographers may be more obliged to shoot in the shadows of a tree, building etc. But those shadows cast a certain color–they’re often much cooler in color tones. See how the tones on Bec above are warmer and the tones in the background are very cool overall?



That’s much different than shooting out in the actual sunlight where the warmer tones are more dominant in the scene overall. Let there be enough color contrast in your scene to help your subject stand out from the rest of the photo. Consider this in conjunction with various compositional techniques based on the lens type that you’re using.
Daylight or Shade White Balance



Lots and lots of photographers opt for auto white balance settings and then go about tweaking the images in post-production. Personally, I’ve never really been too attached to the auto setting but I’m also very opposed to always manually white balancing for each scene because the camera will balance for what it thinks I want and actually not what I want.

So instead, I typically go about my day working in two white balance modes: daylight and tungsten. But during Golden Hour, I’ll stick with daylight or shade. Daylight and Tungsten are the traditional film white balances and shade is a very digital photo creation.



Daylight, as you may guess, it designed to be used in actual daylight. By nature, it’s a very cool white balance. Shade is a bit warmer overall and can bring that warmth back to the skin tones if you’re shooting in a more shadowy area.

In an effort to stay away from major amounts of post production or more than is really necessary, I lock my white balance into one of these settings when doing golden hour portraits. Try it!


Backlighting a Subject, and Spot Metering





Lastly, I’m going to recommend something that’s inevitable with shooting golden hour portraits: backlighting a subject. When your camera looks at the scene in evaluative metering modes, it’s going to want to compensate for the very strong sunlight. Don’t let your camera do that. Instead, backlight your subject and lock the exposure.



Pro Tip: When shooting wide open, be sure to exercise proper breathing control to ensure that you keep your subject in focus.


With the newer Canon DSLRs, your camera will spot meter based on the actual autofocusing point. But not all cameras do this. Instead, they’ll spot meter based on the center. In that case, you’ll need to focus on your subject using the center point, lock the exposure, recompose and shoot. That’s how photographers have done it for years.


Otherwise, you can just shoot in manual mode, focus on your subject and call it a day.


Try these out and you’ll see that you’ll spend much less time editing.

This California Neuroscientist Shoots ‘Mind-Blowing’ Photos


These landscape photos are the unique work of a PhD candidate nicknamed ‘The Light Ninja.’

It’s said that art mimics life. For 32-year-old neuroscience PhD-candidate Daniel Sanculi, art takes life on a magic carpet ride.

The Colorado native picked up photography a few years ago as a hobby while he was in school. In 2011, Sanculi moved to northern California and picked up a serious outdoors addiction.

“I got into backpacking and hiking in the Sierra Nevada mountains,” he told us. “I quickly realized that these amazing locations would give me an opportunity to capture images of places not many people get to see.”

The Light Ninja

As a neuroscientist, Sanculi creates images not many can see, at least not in reality.

His Instagram handle, @TheLightNinja, pretty well describes his art. Sanculi takes crisp photos and then infuses his imagination with light and color trickery.

“My favorite part is the editing process,” he said. “In my opinion, this is where true art can take place.”

Sanculi inverts colors and augments scenes of forests, rivers, waterfalls, and starscapes.

Like his art? Sanculi will soon sell prints from his website. Until then, check out his Instagram page for tons of more trippy outdoors images.

25 incredible streets you must visit before you die


Which streets have we missed? Let us know in the comments below.

1. Champs-Élysées, Paris

This tree-lined boulevard in Paris’s eighth arrondissement is often described as the “world’s most beautiful avenue”. It runs for just over a mile, linkng the Place de la Concorde with the Arc de Triomphe in Place Charles de Gaulle, passing through the Jardin de Champs-Élysées and its various museums and monuments, including the Grand Palais and Petit Palais. Completed in 1670, the avenue houses scores of luxury shops, cafes and theatres and is the venue for the final miles of the Tour de France cycling race and the Bastille Day military parade.

2. Ocean Drive, Miami

“Running along the ocean from the tip of South Beach to 15th Street, Ocean Drive is a bustling cacophony of Art Deco hotels glowing in neon and pastel, sidewalk cafés serving mojitos the size of fishbowls, and tourists clamouring for a taste of the South Beach good life,” says Telegraph Travel’s Miami expert, Shayne Benowitz. “Lummus Park buffers the ocean with volleyball courts, outdoor workout machines and a winding path with rollerbladers and joggers whizzing by. Here, you’ll also find the Versace Mansion, where the designer was murdered in cold blood in 1997. Taking a stroll along Ocean Drive, lapping up the spectacle, soaking up the sun and enjoying the sea breeze, is a must.”

Ocean Drive, Miami CREDIT: CREDIT: NIKREATIVE / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO/NIKREATIVE / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO
3. Stradun, Dubrovnik

Despite the crowds, a walk down Stradun, the main thoroughfare in Dubrovnik's old town, is a must, especially if you're a fan of Game of Thrones (it's where Cersei Lannister takes her walk of penance).

“Most of the top attractions in Dubrovnik are concentrated in the car-free old town, within the medieval walls,” says Jane Foster, Telegraph Travel’s Dubrovnik expert. “Two monumental arched gates, Pile (to the west) and Ploče (to the east), serve as entrances to the old town, and they are joined by the main thoroughfare, Stradun (aka Placa). Off each side of Stradun lies a grid of narrow alleys (some involving steep stone steps), harbouring countless cafés, restaurants and apartments to rent.”
4. Nevsky Prospect, St Petersburg

“It’s possible to spend the entire day exploring this three-mile stretch of St Petersburg that was cut through thick woodland in 1718,” explains Marc Bennetts, Telegraph Travel’s St Petersburg expert. “From the Cathedral of Our Lady of Kazan, inspired by St Peter’s Basilica, to the countless cafés, bars and restaurants along the main drag, and just off it, Nevsky Prospekt is the centre of the city’s cultural and social life.” 

Nevsky Prospect CREDIT: BORIS STROUJKO - FOTOLIA
5. Broadway and Times Square, New York

The 13-mile Manhattan stretch of this vast street, which also runs through the borough of Bronx for two miles, is home to Times Square, which took its name from The New York Times newspaper (it moved here in 1904, but has moved again since). In 1907 the New Year's Eve tradition, where a "ball" drops from the roof of the old Times building (now One Times Square), began, helping make the square a natural rallying location for New Yorkers (for victory parades, the mark World Series baseball successes, or protest presidential elections). It also, of the course, the city’s hub for theatre, cinema - and giant advertisements.


6. Unter den linden, Berlin

The sprawling boulevard in Berlin’s Mitte district stretches from the City Palace to the Brandeburg Gate. Paul Sullivan, our Berlin expert, says: “It's the city's take on the Champs-Elysée, taking in the chestnut trees and the run of shops, glamorous theatres and excellent museums along the way. It’s a very touristy spot, so for a bit of peace and quiet pop into the Room of Silence on the north side, built specifically for visitors to rest and reflect.”

7. Wenceslas Square, Prague

“The teeming Wenceslas Square is the place to gauge the city’s zeitgeist in the fashions of the up-and-coming and the wares on offer, which now run from classic smoked meats to organic vegetarian smoothies (don’t miss the vast book collection at Palác knih Luxor, Wenceslas Square 41),” says Telegraph Travel’s Prague expert, Will Tizard. “This main thoroughfare, topped by the National Museum and lined with fine Art Deco façades, showcases grimacing figures holding up balconies and the frozen-in-the-1920s Lucerna shopping passage.” 

Wenceslas Square CREDIT: AP
The best hotels in Prague
8. The Royal Mile, Edinburgh

The main street of the Scottish capital’s Old Town actually comprises several streets that link Edinburgh Castle and Holyrood Palace: Castlehill, Lawnmarket, High Street, Cannongate and Abbey Strand. “The distinctive crown spire of St Giles’ Cathedral marks the historic heart of The Royal Mile,” says Linda MacDonald, Telegraph Travel’s Edinburgh expert. “Despite the ponderous piers supporting the tower of the much-altered but essentially Gothic High Kirk of Edinburgh, the soaring interior of this ancient church is flooded with light.”
9. Via Dolorosa, Jerusalem

Jerusalem's most famous thoroughfare, Via Dolorosa - "Way of Sorrow" - is thought to be the route Jesus took, carrying his cross, before his crucifixion. Easter is a particularly busy time for pilgrim groups to walk the route, some with heavy wooden crucifixes in tow. The Stations of the Cross along the way - its start point is contested - mark points in Jesus' struggle: the second station, for example, in the Chapel of the Condemnation in the Franciscan Monastery, is where Jesus was handed his death sentence and beaten by Roman soldiers.

Note: The Foreign Office doesn't currently advise against visiting Jerusalem but warns tourists to exercise caution. See its website for full details. 

Via Dolorasa
10. La Rambla, Barcelona

Sally Davies, our Barcelona expert, writes: "The city's most famous street is a mile-long avenue that begins at the Columbus Monument in front of the port, and ends at the Plaça Catalunya. Recent legislation means that the stalls of caged animals and birds have been (thankfully) replaced with upmarket souvenirs and tourist information points, but the colourful flower stalls remain, as does Miró's pavement mosaic, halfway up. Dotted along the boulevard are the wax and erotic museums, the Palau de la Virreina information centre and exhibition space and, of course, the wonderful Boqueria food market. La Rambla takes on a very different character in winter and first thing in the morning, which is my favourite time to walk it."

La Rambla CREDIT: © KUMAR SRISKANDAN / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO/KUMAR SRISKANDAN / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO
11. The Shambles, York

For full atmospheric effect, approach York's greatest building - The Minster - via The Shambles, an ancient cobbled street mentioned in the Domesday Book where the upper stories of the 14th-century timber houses lean out, almost to within touching distance.

Shambles, York CREDIT: © IAN DAGNALL / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO/IAN DAGNALL / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO

12. Hollywood Road, Hong Kong

"While Nathan Road in the Kowloon neighbourhood might be an obvious one to visit, Hollywood Road - where you’ll find the Man Mo temple and a host of antiques shops - is far more interesting," says Telegraph Travel’s Teresa Machan.

Fionnuala McHugh, Telegraph Travel’s Hong Kong expert, adds: "Visitors to Hong Kong tend to come here as their single temple excursion, partly because it is convenient to Central and partly because it is so atmospheric inside. The temple has been here since 1847, and is where the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals, which runs it, still hold Autumn Sacrificial Rites every year for Hong Kong’s continuing prosperity. I like popping in during the quieter afternoons, pausing for a serene, fragrant moment, and watching the ash drop to the stone floor while locals make offerings." 

Man Mo Temple CREDIT: ALAMY
13. Gurney Drive, Malaysia

The seafront promenade in Penang offers some of the best street food in all of Asia, with countless stalls at the Gurney Drive Hawker Centre that have been operating from the Seventies.
The perfect Malaysia beach and self-drive tour
14. The Dark Hedges, Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland's most photogenic country road, flanked by gloriously gnarled beech trees, provides the otherworldly backdrop for King's Road, a key route through the fictional world of Westeros in the Game of Thrones television series.

The Dark Hedges CREDIT: ALAMY
15. Bourbon Street, New Orleans

“The standard itinerary for most first-time visitors to New Orleans - where its well known jazz festival is played out - includes locating the French Quarter, walking down Bourbon Street and ordering a neon-coloured cocktail,” says Telegraph Travel's Adam Karlin. “Set in the centre of the city’s oldest neighbourhood, the street extends for around 13 blocks from Canal to Esplanade Avenue and forms the main base for the city’s annual Mardi Gras festivities.” 
16. Portobello Road, London

London has countless streets worth exploring, from the cobbles of Middle Temple Lane to the wide expanse of The Mall. 

But we're plumping Portobello Road, home to one of the capital’s most famous markets, which flogs vintage clothes and antiques and dates back to 1740. “You can visit the travel bookshop of the character played by actor Hugh Grant in the film Notting Hill - it's actually a shoe shop on Portobello Road. Just around the corner on Blenheim Crescent you’ll find the real life Travel Bookshop, which was the inspiration behind the one in the movie,” says Sally Peck, Telegraph Travel’s family travel editor.

17. Beale Street, Memphis

Memphis is a crucible of American myth and tragedy. The city itself, though comparatively small, punches above its weight in terms of attractions and cachet. The bars of Beale Street may be a pale imitation of what they were when a teenage Elvis hung out here, but they still rock every night. The King, of course, is credited with giving birth to rock and roll, when he recorded That’s All Right, Mama in Sun Studio (now a museum) in Memphis in 1954, and his former home at Graceland has become a site of secular pilgrimage.
18. The Royal Crescent and The Circus, Bath

“Built by John Wood the Younger from 1767 to 1775, when it overlooked fields, Bath’s most singularly impressive piece of architecture is, in fact, a half-ellipse, not a crescent,” says Fred Mawer, our Bath expert. “Its 30 houses are now mostly divided up into apartments – John Cleese owns one. Conjure up a reason (afternoon tea?) to pop in to The Royal Crescent Hotel for a snoop. Also have a look around No 1 Royal Crescent (no1royalcrescent.org.uk). Maintained by the Bath Preservation Trust, it is furnished in period style, and a major restoration project has reunited it with its original service wing.

The Circus, Bath CREDIT: ALTIN OSMANAJ - FOTOLIA

“Encircling vast plane trees, the Circus is Bath’s other must-see Georgian masterpiece – note the carved motifs, some of them Masonic, on the houses’ facades.” 
19. Khao San Road, Bangkok

Beautiful it is not, but every trip to Bangkok should include a stroll down the city's hectic backpacker thoroughfare. It will make visits to the city's temples - or escapes to Thailand's islands - even more rewarding.
20. Haight-Ashbury, San Francisco

The intersection of Haight and Ashbury streets in San Francisco forms this historic district - known as the birthplace of hippie culture. The area is also known for its "painted ladies" - a collection of nearly 48,000 Victorian and Edwardian houses painting in bright colours. 

The Painted Ladies in Haight-Ashbury CREDIT: AP

San Francisco has a couple of curiosities too. Dubbed the "most crooked street in the world", Lombard Street features a series of crazy switchbacks, and has appeared in several films, such as Vertigo and Bullitt. The zig-zag design was introduced in 1922 to help reduce the road's natural 27 per cent slope. Filbert and 22nd Streets, meanwhile, are among the steepest in the world (31.5 per cent).

An aerial view of Lombard Street CREDIT: ALAMY
21. Baldwin Street, Dunedin

While we're on the subject of steepness, we ought to mention Baldwin Street, the world’s steepest residential road, according to Guinness World Records. It lies a couple of miles northeast of Dunedin’s city centre and is 350 metres long, rising from 30m to 100m above sea level. That amounts to an average gradient of 1:5, or 20 per cent. The upper half is far steeper, however, with an average slope of 1:3.41 and a maximum of 1:2.86, or 35 per cent. Its steepness was unintentional. The city’s streets were laid out in a grid pattern by planners in London with no consideration for the terrain.

Baldwin Street CREDIT: © GREG BALFOUR EVANS / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO/GREG BALFOUR EVANS / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO
22. South Congress Avenue, Austin

This street in Austin, often dubbed America’s "coolest" city, features a host of hip hotels, trendy restaurants, food trucks, thrift stores, cowboy boot shops and design boutiques.
23. Shijo Avenue, Kyoto

This long, narrow, pedestrianised riverside walk in Kyoto's Gion district is where you're likely to see geisha scuttling to work at dusk.
24. Route 66

The longest road on our list, Route 66 stretches from Chicago to San Francisco. Chris Moss writes: "In the Forties and Fifties, Route 66 was sometimes dubbed 'America’s Main Street', passing through many small towns in the Midwest and Southwest. Although the original trunk road was decommissioned in 1984, Historic Route 66 preserves much of the old atmosphere. Route 66 is also a tick-list of famous topographies, including downtown Chicago, St Louis, the Grand Canyon and Santa Monica beach. Stop off at classy, cult and kitsch hotels and restaurants, including the Ariston Café in Litchfield, Illinois, said to be the oldest on the route; ultra-retro Munger Moss Motel in Lebanon, Missouri; Hollywood favourite the El Rancho Hotel in Gallup, New Mexico and beautiful La Posada Hotel in Winslow, Arizona."

Route 66 CREDIT: TREKANDPHOTO - FOTOLIA
25. Spreuerhofstraße, Reutlingen, Germany

And the tiniest. Measuring around 31 centimetres at its narrowest point, and 50 centimetres at its widest, Spreuerhofstraße is said to be the world’s narrowest street. Set in Reutlingen in south-west Germany, it was built in 1727 after the surrounding area was demolished by a fire in 1726.

The best London gigs...


When it comes to live music in London, it’s wise to plan ahead. The most popular London gigs sell out months in advance. Here’s our round-up of the best London live shows in 2016, to help you discover the best new music and book tickets to the hottest concerts before everyone else does. For more gigging goodness check out our run-down of gigs in London this week. With our help, you’ll never miss your favourite artist on tour again.

Drake
The golden boy of rap is setting up camp in London for a mammoth 11 days – just about long enough to play out his latest album, ‘Views’, in full.


The O2 , Greenwich Peninsula Monday March 20 2017



Glass Animals
You can count on this experimental electronic pop outfit to make a splash with lush, hazy pop curveballs layered with psychedelic synth-work and gentle beats.





Underworld

Romford's finest bring their viscerally engaging and always inventive post-techno to London, and wheeling out some ’90s classics too. Read our interview with Underworld’s Karl Hyde.

Alexandra Palace , Muswell Hill Friday March 17 2017



Billy Ocean
The biggest-selling black British artist of all time comes home to London to wrap his silky tones around a clutch of hits including ‘When the Going Gets Tough’ and ‘Love Really Hurts Without You’. London Palladium , Soho Thursday April 20 2017



Joe Bonamassa
American blues-rocker Bonamassa wields his axe like Jeff Beck and sings like Clapton, curiously taking influences from his own country via the Brits. Here he's booked an impressive four-night run at one of London's biggest venues.
Royal Albert Hall , Knightsbridge Thursday April 20 2017 - Friday April 21 2017






Marc Almond
The magnetic Mr Almond is turning 60 this year and ready to remind everyone of his impressive slew of hits as a solo star and part of Soft Cell.

ULLI SCHMELING
CARLOS SOUZA
UPP TEAM EUROPE

Possibly the Best Focal Length for Landscape Photography?


If you’re a landscape photography enthusiast like me, you’re constantly trying to find new approaches and even new gear that will help you capture the beauty before you with more pleasing results.

I’ve experimented with various focal lengths for my landscapes - everything from ultra-wide-angle to shooting landscapes with a telephoto.

I’ve gotten great results across the spectrum of focal lengths, but one in particular stands out to me as better than the rest: 24mm.

There’s a ton of reasons why 24mm is my favorite focal length for landscapes, which I’ll get into in just a minute.

But perhaps most important of all, there’s a 24mm lens out there for virtually any camera body and every manufacturer. Better still, you can find quality 24mm lenses for a wide range of prices to fit just about any budget.

That makes the 24mm lens not just highly useful for landscape photographers, but also highly accessible.

So, without further ado, let’s explore a few benefits of the 24mm lens for landscape photography.

It’s Wide (But Not Too Wide)


There are plenty of photographers that can create gorgeous landscape images with impossibly short focal lengths like 14mm.

I’m not one of them. I simply prefer the look of 24mm over 14mm.

Why?

There’s less distortion. The narrower angle of view also allows me to frame up slightly more intimate shots in which the subject is highlighted in a more purposeful manner. And I can do that while still benefitting from the wide-angle view that allows me to capture a good deal of the scene before me.

What’s more, my 24mm prime is sharp and gives me excellent image quality. That’s not to say that other focal lengths can’t do the same; I’m just impressed with the results I get with my 24mm lens, and I think you would be too.
It Makes You Think


Like any prime lens, the 24mm forces you to think about your compositions before firing the shutter.

Without the benefit of zoom, you have to use your feet to adjust the framing of the shot such that you maximize its impact and minimize distractions.

That means you spend more time engaged with your gear and with the landscape, which, if you ask me, is a good recipe for getting improved results while getting the most out of your lens.

Now, that’s not to say that using a 24mm lens will automatically make you a better photographer just by virtue of the fact that you have to put more thought into the process.

But what it will do is prevent those “lazy moments” when you might feel like hopping out of the car, using your zoom lens to frame up a shot, and start firing away.

Instead, the 24mm will compel you to move around, check your framing and composition, and take measures to improve what you see through the lens.
It’s Versatile


Not only is 24mm a great focal length for landscapes, but it’s also a great focal length for other photography pursuits.

Use it for astrophotography (with the same sharp results I mentioned above), cityscapes, event photography, and even portraiture - especially group portraits in which you need a wider angle of view but don’t want tons of perspective distortion.

What’s more, as I mentioned in the introduction, there are a plethora of 24mm lenses on the market. That means that no matter what system you shoot with, you’ll be able to find a 24mm prime lens.

We all know how expensive photography can be. Why not have a lens that’s both versatile in terms of the types of camera systems for which they are made and the types of photos you can take with them?
Low-Light Performance is On Point


Whether you’re a daytime shooter or you venture out at night for some astrophotography landscapes, a 24mm prime can handle it.

I especially like the results I get when shooting at dusk or at night with my 24mm lens. Most lenses at this focal length have maximum apertures of f/2 or wider, giving you all sorts of options for low light shooting without necessarily having to push the ISO to make a shot possible.

What’s more, you can use that wide aperture to get the shots you want without needing an ultra-slow shutter speed. In fact, you’ll likely find many occasions - landscapes and portraits to name a couple - when shooting wide open even allows you to handhold your camera (perhaps with a boost in ISO).

That means you can work lean and mean, and leave your tripod behind in favor of moving fast, just you, your camera, and your awesome 24mm lens, and maybe a stunning sunset or two along the way.

With the central benefits of the 24mm prime out of the way, let’s have a look at a few excellent examples you might consider adding to your kit.
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24mm f/1.4G ED Lens


Compatible with both Nikon DX and FX format lenses, the NIKKOR 24mm f/1.4G ED gives you precise results with a natural-looking angle of view.

The large f/1.4 maximum aperture gives you greater possibilities for low-light shooting, and also ensures you’ve got a range of control over depth of field with aperture values that extend to f/16.

The lens features 12 elements in 10 groups, including two aspherical lenses and two extra-low dispersion lenses that give you excellent contrast with minimal aberration. The silent wave motor gives you accurate results quickly, but while being nearly silent as well. And with rear focusing, you get fast autofocus response and smooth action while minimizing barrel rotation and lens extension.



For a hands-on look at this lens, watch the video above by Damian Brown.

Other features include:
Nano crystal coating to reduce flare and ghosting
Manual focus override for quickly switching from auto to manual
Rounded 9-blade diaphragm for smooth bokeh

Canon EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM Lens


This L-series lens from Canon means it’s their top offering that features all sorts of goodies for landscape photographers.

Aside from being weather and dust-sealed, the Canon EF 24mm f/1.4 II offers professional-level results, including outstanding sharpness throughout the aperture range.

The circular aperture gives you the power to create wonderful background blur at larger apertures while smaller apertures offer sharpness from foreground to background. This is aided by high-precision aspherical elements that minimize distortion and aberration. See this lens in action in the video below by Chris Winter:



This lens takes sharpness a step further by incorporating two UD lenses, which help improve detail from corner to corner with little ghosting or flare. Paired with Canon’s venerable ultrasonic motor, you get quick autofocus but have the option of manual override whenever you like.

Other features include:
Floating internal focus system to improve image quality
Aperture range of f/1.4-f/22
Minimum focus distance of just 3-inches
Sub-wavelength lens coating to minimize flare and ghosting

Sony 24mm f/2.0 Carl Zeiss Wide-Angle Lens


For Sony shooters, it doesn’t get much better than the 24mm f/2 Carl Zeiss lens.

Carl Zeiss has a reputation for excellent lenses, and this one certainly follows suit. The nine blade diaphragm gives you great bokeh and also allows you to work in low-light situations. Get wide shots of the greater landscape or get up close with the 7.6-inch minimum focusing distance.

Like the Sigma 24mm lens discussed below, the Sony benefits from incredibly quiet and smooth operation. This is due to the built-in supersonic wave motor that gives you quick response, which is aided by quick and easy switching between auto and manual focus.

The lens has a metal lens barrel that not only ensures durability and high performance, but it also looks great!

Other features include:
An aperture range of f/2-f/22
Extra-low dispersion glass
Aspheric glass elements
Compatible with Sony Alpha and Minolta DSLRs

Sigma 24mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art Lens


Available for Canon EF and Nikon F mount camera systems, the Sigma 24mm f/1.4 is wide, fast, and has excellent optical construction that results in beautifully sharp images.

The Sigma has three F Low Dispersion elements, that, when combined with four Special Low Dispersion elements, results in images with a significant reduction in chromatic aberration. Overall, the lens has 15 elements in 11 groups that give you results that are bright with high contrast and good color fidelity, but reduced instances of ghosting and flare.

The hypersonic motor gives you lightning quick performance that’s also smooth and virtually silent. Nine diaphragm blades give you beautiful bokeh while the full-time manual focus override makes it easy for you to take control of focusing simply by rotating the focus ring. See more about this lens in the video below by Christopher Frost:



Other features include:
Aperture Range: f/1.4 to f/16
Thermally Stable Composite construction
Brass bayonet mount for added durability
Compatible with full frame and crop sensor Canon and Nikon bodies

If you’re looking for a high-quality 24mm lens that’s got tons of features but without a huge price tag, it’s hard to beat this little Sigma.

Rokinon 24mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC Wide-Angle Lens


Even if you’re on a budget, you can still find a good 24mm prime lens for your Canon or Nikon camera.

As far as budget 24mm lenses go, the Rokinon 24mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC lens is an excellent option that gives you sharp images with reduced flare and ghosting.

That’s a result of four low-dispersion elements and two aspheric elements that work together to give you pleasing views whether you’re shooting a wide landscape or a close-up.

Light transmission in the Rokinon is on point with a multi-layered UMC coating that prevents reflections. Paired with an automatic chip that confirms your focus settings, aperture, and other important settings, you’ve got the makings of a solid partner for your camera.

Other features include:
Versatile usage for shooting landscapes, street scenes, group photos, and more
Hybrid aspherical lenses offer well-defined and sharp images
Get close-up shots with a minimum focusing distance of 9.84 inches
Compatible with full frame and crop sensor Canon and Nikon bodies


Whether you need a lens for your Canon, Nikon, Sony, or another brand of camera, you can find a great 24mm prime to add to your kit. The examples above are some of the best on the market right now, and I think you’ll find they give you a fresh and exciting perspective on your landscape photography that will have you agreeing with me that 24mm is the best focal length for landscapes.

Don’t take my word for it, though. Find a great deal on a 24mm prime lens today, and see how much you like the results!