Infinity Focus Photography

Infinity Focus Photography

Taking sharp pictures at night or with subjects at mid-range can be particularly challenging. The autofocus on your camera will often select the wrong focus point, which will cause your intended subject to become blurred or your camera will not be able to capture the subject at all. It is particularly difficult for a camera to find a focal point in an image at dusk and in the dark. However, thanks to the infinite focus setting, even distant subjects such as stars, fireworks or vast landscapes can be shot in focus.

To do this, first select the manual focus on your camera. A small switch on the lens allows you to switch between two modes: autofocus and manual focus. ‘AF’ stands for autofocus and ‘MF’ for manual focus. On some cameras, autofocus only needs to be deactivated in order to switch to manual focus.


The focus can now be adjusted using a scale on the lens. Depending on the manufacturer, the values can be given in feet or metres. By turning the focus ring, you can determine the distance or focus point from which everything in the image should be in focus. Modern camera lenses often have an infinity mark (an eight lying on its side), which indicates the infinity focus setting on the lens. Turn the mark on the focus ring to this symbol to take a picture with the infinity focus setting. Depending on your type of camera lens, everything from a certain distance will be in focus. However, areas that are closer to the camera may appear blurred on the image. You can counteract this effect by using a high f-number to get stones or similar objects in the foreground sharp in the picture.


If there is no infinity mark on your lens, you can simply add one yourself. To do this, focus on a subject that is very far away, such as a cloud, and then mark this point on the focus ring with a white, waterproof pen.

However, some kit lenses do not have a scale for focussing. In this case, you can use the camera's Live View mode to set the infinite focus. Press the symbol with the magnifying glass and move the white box in the display to any position in the image. Now use the magnifying glass to zoom further into the image until you are as close as possible to a distant point, for example a star or a cloud. However, do not change the zoom on the lens! Then focus the image via the lens using the focus ring. Finally, press the magnifying glass symbol again to exit the Live View mode. You can now take photos with the infinity focus setting.



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