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Pros And Cons Of Photographing Converging Verticals

Here, we find out what converging verticals are and when they can be a good, and bad, thing.

|  General Photography
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Georgia Head-on


If you've ever photographed a tall building from below looking up, the chances are that you've experienced converging vertical in your photography. But what are they, and are they a good thing or a bad thing? The truth is they can be both. Find out why here. 

What are converging verticals?

Converging verticals appear in photos when you photograph tall, square objects such as buildings at an angle looking up or down. When you point your camera upwards to fit the top of the building in the image, converging verticals occur as the lines of the building converge, or appear to get closer and closer together, the higher up the building you look. Converging verticals can appear more pronounced when using a wide-angle lens.


What can I do to stop converging verticals occurring in my photos?

The simple answer is to hold your camera completely level when photographing buildings. Most cameras will have a built-in spirit level to help you to achieve this. It may mean that you have to take your image from further away to fit the whole building in without tilting the camera. Other options include shooting from mid-height or correcting the effect in post-production software. 

Can converging verticals be a good thing? 

Yes! They may be a nuisance when you want to have perfectly straight buildings, but converging verticals are an ideal tool to use when photographing something disappearing off into the distance. Using multiple converging lines in a shot leading the eye to one central position often works well. 


Can You Use Them For Other Subjects?

Yes, you can and this includes portraits where you can use converging verticles to draw the eye to the subject. The above example is an excellent example of this. 

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DouglasMorley 9 30 1 Canada
22 Jan 2020 6:41PM
Are not the lines in the above portrait converging laterals not verticals, or simply put just converging lines?

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altitude50 15 17.0k United Kingdom
23 Jan 2020 5:58PM
I think that the effect shown is perspective. The same way that straight railway lines seem to meet at the horizon.
Converging verticals are where the camera is tilted at a tall building and the top appears narrower than the base. (Which is actually still perspective.) As in.......21670_1579802242.jpg

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