For this exercise the instruction was to find a a subject in front of a background with depth and shoot three images with varying focus and aperture settings.
I used my 28-70mm 3.5-5.6 zoom lens
For this series I stumbled across a set of gates which aligned nicely into a square shape overlooking a field. Whilst I don’t feel the background is the best example of depth the shape of the gates was too good of an example to not use.
For this first image I set the focus to infinity bringing the field in focus and throwing the gate out of focus. At this aperture setting the gates are blurred due to the depth of field but as the lens doesn’t have a very wide f stop they are still clearly distinct and can be identified which in certain circumstances can be a positive to add context to an image but in other may be a distraction to the main objective.
This next image I set the focus to infinity but stopped the lens down to f18 to increase the in focus range. As described above the gates now act as a distraction in the image as the eye is uncertain on which part of the image to concentrate on. I can see that certain circumstance may call for this effect such as maintaining the inclusion of very slim objects such as grass or wire, this may be to maintain context of the image. For me the effect doesn’t translate well to larger object.
F.18 small aperture
This final image is shot with a wide aperture and focused to the gates themselves. This technique throws the background out of focus and concentrating the eyes on the gates. I like the effect this creates switching the context of the image from the first image. The tone changes from a field behind bars to bars in front of a field. Changing the story from one of freedom beyond the wall to feeling trapped behind the bars.