Say I take a photo with a camera that has the aperture and lens of, say, a camera specifically designed for wide-shots and large display ratios to capture more elements, such as a motion picture camera.

Does that imply that a wider aperture means a wider shot?


Aperture does not affect the field of view (FoV) of a lens. Rather, it determines how much of the light from a specific FoV is allowed through the lens. A narrower aperture will prevent the less collimated rays from a specific FoV through, but it does not change the FoV of the lens in the way that your question indicates you believe it does.


The aperture is kind of like your iris. It controls how much light gets in. You don't see wider when you come indoors and your iris gets bigger, just more light gets in. The main difference with a camera lens is that the size of the aperture also impacts the depth of field. The larger the aperture opening is (the smaller the f number), the shallower the depth of field becomes (the quicker things go out of focus as you move away from the point that is focused on.)

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    The size of your eye's iris also affects the depth of field of your vision. That is why problems such as near and far sightedness are more problematic in dim light. If your eye can't focus that closely in bright light, the wide DoF allows you to see close objects almost in focus. In the dark, the DoF is much narrower and the minimum distance you can get almost in focus moves much farther away. – Michael C Jun 21 '13 at 2:32
  • @MichaelClark - good to know. I suspected it might, but wasn't 100% sure on the optics of the eye since the lens can also deform which is a nice trick that camera lenses haven't mastered yet. – AJ Henderson Jun 21 '13 at 13:38
  • When you move two camera lens elements in relation to each other to focus, changing the shape of the theoretical thin lens they replicate is exactly what you are doing. – Michael C Jun 26 '13 at 5:48
  • @MichaelClark good point. – AJ Henderson Jun 26 '13 at 13:06

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