Fisheye Landscapes

by Lauren Polowick
March 25, 2012



Fisheye photograph of Kananaskis by Lauren Polowick ©

Kananaskis, AB  ISO 100  f/7.1  1/200

As an artist, I am driven to create pieces that present viewers with a unique, exciting and often abstracted twist on common subjects and traditional practices.  Because of this, it comes as no surprise that I developed a great love for fisheye photography.  The hemispherical shape of a fisheye lens produces the most amazing, distinctive photos with a very large field of vision and extensive radius. The contrast between the relatively standard center and distorted outer elements is sure to bring new life to any otherwise ordinary shot.

In my most recent work, I’ve been experimenting with fisheye lens adapters. Compatible with most DSLRs they can be purchased for around $30 on sites like amazon or eBay.  The photos below were all taken using a Nikon D3000 and a Polaroid 0.42x HD Super Wide Angle Panoramic Macro Fisheye Lens purchased on 

Fisheye photograph of Priddis by Lauren Polowick ©

Priddis, AB  ISO 100  f/5.6  1/125

The composition of a fisheye photograph is very important. Because of the expansive field of view, you can put a distinct and unique twist on an otherwise arbitrary shot. Be sure to choose a location where there are numerous points of interest in both foreground and background; for example, a ridge overlooking a mountain peak where you can focus on a tree branch in the foreground framed by mountains in the background.

Fisheye photograph of Kananaskis by Lauren Polowick ©

Kananaskis, AB ISO 100  f/8.3  1/250

Fisheye photography of Numa Falls, BC by Lauren Polowick ©

Numa Falls, BC  ISO 100  f/8  1/250

Fisheye photograph of Fish Creek Park, Calgary by Lauren Polowick ©

Fish Creek Park, Calgary AB  ISO 200  f/5  1/100

I took the followings shots using my .42x macro fisheye lens minus the macro filter. To achieve this same look, hold the fisheye filter at arms length and pick a focal point in the middle of the fisheye’s circle.

Fisheye photograph of Banff National Park by Lauren Polowick ©

Banff National Park, AB  ISO 100  f/6.3  1/160

Fisheye photograph by Lauren Polowick ©

Priddis, AB  ISO 110  f/5.6  1/125

Because you are focusing through a magnifying glass, you may have to play around with the distance between camera and lens. Make sure that you are focusing on the subject matter within the lens and not on the lens itself or your hand. I find holding the lens at arms length away, securing a focal point, and gradually bringing it closer to you works effectively.

Fisheye photograph of Priddis by Lauren Polowick ©

Priddis, AB  ISO 125  f/5.6  1/125


Lauren Polowick portrait


Bio: Lauren Polowick is an amateur photographer living in Calgary. She has a passion for all things creative and a strong connection to Western Canada’s mountain wilderness. Her interest in photography began while completing her B.Fa at the University of Lethbridge. Initially focusing on portrait and studio photography, she has since continued to develop her ability and has turned her interests on capturing and presenting natural landscapes in new ways.


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