For the first time ever I had the opportunity to use a Tilt Shift lens (the Canon TS-E 17mm f/4L Tilt-Shift from and really enjoyed using it. I didn’t use it for its “tradional” purpose (architectural photography) but rather was playing around with the unique depth of field it creates and the ability for it to make things look “miniature”.

Using the lens was easy, and even focusing was a piece of cake (read the last paragraph of this post for my focusing tip). I think the most difficult part was actually finding something to photograph. I was looking for a neighborhood scene, one that I could get up over but didn’t want the houses to be too far away. I think that this image is a good example of how cool the focus can look with these types of lenses.

Here’s my quick focusing tip: When you are using a Canon lens in the manual focus mode—and the tilt-shift lenses are all manually focusing lenses—put your focus point where you want focus to be (in the above photo my focus-point was set on the brown house in the bottom right third of the image). Then half-press the shutter while turning the lens’s focusing ring. You’ll hear a “beep” when the camera senses that its in focus. Then take your photo and voila! Your image is in-focus.