Join Ian Robinson for an in-depth discussion in this video Exploring field of view and aspect ratio, part of CINEMA 4D R16 Essential Training.
Now, we already know one of the main advantages of working with camera objects, is the fact that we can easily position them in the scene. But, another great thing, is the fact that they actually simulate real world cameras. So, those of you that have a familiarity with photography or film cameras, are going to be relatively surprised with some of the different options we have with our cameras. To start, I want to switch to view our scene, here through camera B, which is this lower camera. So, make sure we have camera B selected, and then just go ahead and click the target in the middle column to select it.
Now, notice as I'm looking at the lighthouse here, I can see the lighthouse, but not quite all of it. And, my clouds are pretty much cropped out, and my sun is definitely cropped out. Now remember, your viewable area through your camera, is right to the edge of where this black line starts. Anything in this black area is going to be cut out. Since we have cam b selected, we can go ahead and make the Attributes panel a little bit larger, so we can see all of these different options. I want you to go to the Object panel. In here, this is where we can change lenses of the camera, if you will.
The way you change a lens is to go to the Focal Length area. If I go to the right side, notice I have a pull-down and the default is Classic 36 mm. So, let's click on that pull-down. I'd like to create a wide angle look to this, so we'll really go ahead and go super wide, and choose Super Wide 15. Notice, now it looks like I stepped about 50 feet back in the scene. Where I didn't actually move the camera at all. All I did was change the angle of view. To better see this, lets switch to Four up View.
And here, notice how wide those green lines are if we look in the top view. I'm going to dolly back from the top view here, and just pan up so you can see the other camera is a much more narrow view. That has a different field of view. Now, if we go back to the Attributes panel. With a focal length of fifteen, if we come down a little further, notice we have to other parameters, Field of View Horizontal and Field of View Vertical. Now, the combination of these two fields of view actually make up your aspect ratio, which is the ratio of horizontal and vertical.
Now, the way you actually adjust these is in your Render settings. Now, I know my render settings are already set to an HD setting, but just so you can see where those settings are. Go up to your render settings, the clap board with the cog. If you click on that, that will open your Render settings, and in here, notice I am set up by 1280x720. And, if we come down here under the Film Aspects settings, we can see that it's set to HDTV, 16x9. If you need to work at a difference aspect ratio, you can click on this button, go to Film and Video, and choose any of these other options.
If you are working in Film or Video, obviously you have other presets for Web or Screen, you get the idea. So, this is where you actually set your aspect ratio. So, let me go ahead and close my Render settings. So in here, if I go ahead and crank on my Field of View, notice, since I already have my aspect ratio set, yes, it will change these lines. But, they will stay in proportion to each other. And, then also it will change the focal length. And notice, as I'm changing the focal length I'm getting wider and wider views.
Now, that's not what I want to do, so let's click back on the pull down and choose Super Wide 15. Now, there's one other thing that we need to pay attention to when we're working with lenses. And, that's how they actually distort objects in the scene. Let's go to our right scene. And, press h to reframe all the objects in the scene. And, then I'll just pan over here, so we can see the camera's relation to the light house. And, notice it's tilted up at the lighthouse. So, if I dolly in on the Perspective view, notice how imposing that lighthouse looks.
You can do this on purpose if you want to accentuate something to make it look even larger. But, if you want to get rid of that distortion that's happening, you can do that by making the camera lens on a parallel plane to the lighthouse. So, to do that, let's go to the Coordinate settings for my camera object, and adjust the pitch from 10 down to 0. Now, it's perfectly parallel to the lighthouse. So, if I hover over the y axis and move up, notice the lighthouse isn't distorting at all. I mean, we might get a little bit because the bottom of the lighthouse flares out, but all in all, this is a relatively distortion free option.
Okay, so wide angle lenses accentuate the distortion. Now, the other kind of lenses are more like telephoto lenses. So, to check out those lenses, I'm going to jump back here in my Perspective view, and then I'll go to my camera's pull-down, and we'll choose Use Camera, Cam A. That's now switched our view to Camera A, and you can see that reinforced here in Objects manager. Now, let's select Camera A, and make sure we go down to the Objects panel here. And, under the Focal Length, I want you to click on the pull-down, and this time let's choose Tele 135.
Notice, when I do that, even though my camera is way further back in the scene, now I've zoomed into my actual geometry. So, let's dolly back here, and then pan up. Now, one of the great things telephoto lenses do is compress Z space. So notice now, as I pan around in the scene, it looks like my clouds and my sun are almost on the same plane. If you want to make a bunch of objects that are far apart in the scene look closer together, switch your lens to a telephoto lens, move back in the scene, and then that'll help flatten the scene, and make everything look relatively close together.
So, here if I go to Four Up view, just from my top view here, you can see my lighthouse is on one plane, my sun is further back, and my clouds are further back there. So, when it comes to manipulating cameras in Cinema 4D, the field of view is something that can drastically change how your viewing the scene. Just remember, wide the lenses distort the scene, and telephoto lenses compress your scene.
- Understanding the CINEMA 4D workflow
- Navigating the viewports
- Exploring the importance of object hierarchy
- Modeling with primitives and splines
- Modeling with the Knife and Extrude tools
- Using Content Browser presets
- Deforming objects
- Applying materials and texturing
- Creating and manipulating light sources
- Animating in the Timeline with keyframes
- Controlling camera movement
- Rendering and adjusting final render settings
- Compositing in After Effects
- Using MoGraph
- Motion tracking