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What is an Anamorphic Lens?

What is an Anamorphic Lens?

Bella C |

For newcomers, professionals, and all the camera operators in between, the anamorphic lens is ideal for bringing more drama and sweeping cinematography into your shots. The beautiful thing about how anamorphic lenses work is that they're suitable for photography and filming. This makes them versatile and expansive lenses for any repertoire.

Anamorphic lens

So, what exactly is an Anamorphic Lens?

An anamorphic lens is a special lens that has use in photography and videography and what makes them unique is their slanted shape which is more like a flattened oval than the regular spherical shape. This off-equal shape gives images a specific look. The term "anamorphic" is derived from the Greek word "to transform" which hints at the effects and distorted fun you can get from this lens.

Anamorphic lens

What Does an Anamorphic Lens Do?

Anamorphic lenses allow for a wider field of view while using a narrower sensor. This makes them the perfect choice for larger-than-life shots and capture much more of the background and almost giving a peripheral look to the image. These lenses can also be used to provide a crisp and distortion-free look to close-up shots that play with perspective and focus.

Anamorphic Lens Aspect Ratio

The anamorphic lens aspect ratio has become a favored lens for epic cinematic shots. The aspect ratio is the proportion that is between the width and the height of an image. The anamorphic lens usually produces a 2:1 or 2.4:1 ratio with variations depending on the lens. Unfortunately, this will also add black bars once the image is de-squeezed in editing.

This different aspect ratio is part of what gives anamorphic lenses their distinct look that adds to the drama and expanse of the image.

How Do Anamorphic Lenses Work?

To understand what an anamorphic lens does it's important to recognize how they differ from regular lenses. Regular lenses act like a normal human eye and see what's really in front of us with the spherical lens.

An anamorphic lens has an oval shape that almost looks like a squeezed oval. This shape, and the interactions of the optics within the lens, pack a wider view than what would normally fit into the image. It does this without distortion so that when the image is later projected a wider field of view is available than before. This allows for extremely wide angles to see that are not possible with a regular lens.

Benefits of Using an Anamorphic Lens

Anamorphic lenses have a variety of benefits that you can leverage to add effects and drama to your shot. These include:

Flaring effects- The interaction of light with the optic creates fascinating light flares, including horizontal flares, within images.

Wider field of view- Anamorphic lenses give you a widescreen effect, pulling more background images into your shot.

Oval bokeh- The aesthetic quality of out-of-focus images in anamorphic lenses is more oval than circular.

Rack focusing- This change between out-of-focus and in-focus images creates a playful switch that can pull attention.

Compressed, not distorted- The anamorphic lens is designed to bring more information in, compressing the image without distortion.

Get a Wider Shot with an Anamorphic Lens

Anamorphic lenses and what they do have exploded into the photography and videography scene because of their wide range of uses. The full range of anamorphic camera lenses gives photographers a variety of ways to get the perfect shot so for more details on the right lens for you. For more information on the right camera lens for you visit our website.