Minipost: Ornate Spyglass fun, part 1

One of the items I always carry on me nowadays is an Ornate Spyglass. For someone as obsessed with screenshots as I am, any "camera" tricks are invaluable - Eagle Eye, Mind Vision, the name it, I love them all.

I've always liked the Spyglass because it allows you to get REALLY up close and personal! Sometimes you can get shots that would be impossible, since if you got that close you'd enter combat or be instantly killed. For example:

I also really like the strange camera angles it provides (depth of field, to use a technical term). The Spyglass zooms in on your subject matter, but background objects end up looking closer than normal, giving you some very different results compared to conventional screenshots. Such as these two Halfhill shots.

First, a normal screenshot:

And now, the Ornate Spyglass version:

The Spyglass kind of "flattens" everything together into a look that is almost 2D. Look at the Pandaren in the Spyglass version, how they all seem to be roughly the same size. Then look how some of them appear smaller in the normal screenshot due to being further away. Interesting differences!

Background detail and relative object sizes are also completely skewed with the Spyglass. Look at this Spyglass shot of Farmer Yoon, and note the table and round barrel-style building in the background.

Here's how the view looks normally:

Totally different! Look how far away Merchant Cheng and that barrel building ACTUALLY are! And look at the difference in perspective when looking at something really close to the camera (the table). It's like a completely different setting!

I used the Spyglass to capture many of the images used in the second Fabulor/Cloud Serpent post, but while I was taking those shots, I noticed something really cool and hilarious (and very weird) about the Spyglass...

(part two next week!)

6 Responses Subscribe to comments

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    I never noticed this before, then again I've really always chalked the ornate spyglass up to being one of those useless item -- great tip thank you!

    June 24, 2013 at 8:20 AM

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    Wow, I really like the effect of the spyglass for screenshots. Guess my engineer is going to be busy today :)

    June 24, 2013 at 3:40 PM

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    I agree with Starre, I never realized how different it made things. I will have to see if I can obtain one to play with. Thanks for the tip.

    June 25, 2013 at 12:41 AM

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    Ohh, that looks handy! I could have done with something like that when I was doing my 'Worldview' posts on my blog, which I may continue doing, now with added telephoto :D

    btw, depth of field describes how much of an image is in focus around the focal plane; I think the term you need is 'field of view'. It's all about perspective :)

    Of course, it'd be cool if the WoW game engine had support for DoF effects, although you can kinda fake it in Photoshop but it's a lot of work.

    June 25, 2013 at 2:40 AM

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    Great shots, and a great idea to use the spyglass.

    June 25, 2013 at 5:18 PM

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    "although you can kinda fake it in Photoshop but it's a lot of work."

    It's not that bad once you get the hang of it, and can be used to interesting effect. This is a real-world pic I edited to create the illusion of DoF.

    June 28, 2013 at 2:59 PM