The Art of Freelensing: Poor man’s tilt shift lens

Categories: Reviews - Lenses Feature

The Art of Freelensing: Poor man’s tilt shift lens

Freelensing is an unconventional art that deserves appreciation. This method, when adopted, yields interesting photography results. However, it does come with its share of risks.


Basic know-how

Freelensing is commonly referred to as a poor man’s tilt-shift lens; however, it is not a lens, actually. It is a new technique that adventure photographers use to retain results like those achieved by a tilt-shift lens. Therefore, users can use their current lenses, as opposed to mounting the camera lens. It can be used at an angle to get the focus plane. Therefore, these photography tips will come in handy when you are out taking pictures on your next adventure. Freelensing involves a great amount of trial and error in order to get it right. The results may be good or bad, depending on the various adjustments made. However, some of the staple mechanics involved are: • The lens that is intended for use should be mounted on the camera; one can use a telephoto lens for this purpose • Adjust to the manual mode•Ensure that your settings are just right, before experimenting with the technique• The lens should be set to manual focus, and set the focus to infinity • Turn the camera off • The Lens should then be detached • Turn the camera on again • The lens should be pulled away from the body in a particular spot • Once you have a good focus, take a shot, review the picture after, and adjust settings and lens position to get the affects you want. A macro lens can be used for this purpose too.

Tricks of the Trade

When users decide to practice in the studio or bedroom, they will find it easier, as opposed to experimenting outdoors at first. This will ensure that users get ample time to learn how it works, as soon as possible, before exposing their lens and camera. Here are some of the best tips you can try when freelensing. 1. Users can take single shots first before closing it up, and giving the camera ample time to recompose. The wide-angle lens can be used in this instance.

2. Users are advised to use neck straps, as it will prevent them from dropping their cameras. This will allow them to focus on the death grip properly.

3. Freelensing should be avoided in moisture-heavy environments. Therefore, trying out the technique at a beach should be a strict no-no.

4. Using prime lenses would be a preferable option. This is mainly because zoom lenses are susceptible to dust particles. When users zoom in or out, the lens pulls in first, and then pushes out air. This motion allows dust to stick to the inside of the lens.

Therefore, freelensing will make any user fall in love with the art of photography, all over again. It is advisable to learn the tips provided to make the exercise beneficial. The major advantage of freelensing is that the user will never take the same image twice.


This article will surely help you devise and improvise on your own tilt-shift effect. Do share it with your fellow shutterbugs.