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Graphics How-To ~ Convergence

Think of looking at a set of railroad tracks as they go off in the distance. The rails appear to come together -- or converge. In the photos at right, you can see convergence as it appears the walls are either leaning towards or away from eachother.


In the top picture, the walls look like they are about to cave in. By simply using the free transform tool in Photoshop, you can stretch out the top or better yet, bring in the bottom of the picture, make some minor adjustments and you have a house that will stand straight!


The room photo looks like you're in the crazy house at the fair. Again, by simply adjusting with the free transform tool, you can adjust the walls. No it looks like you could walk through the house without leaning!


What causes convergence?

  • When using a wide angle lens, being too close to your subject
  • And not keeping the lens parallel to the building
    • Point up and you get a photo like the house
    • Point down and you get the inside picture


How can I prevent this?

  • If you're photographing the house, use a portrait or telephoto lens and stand across the street.
  • Keep the camera as parallel to the building (or subject) as you can
  • Inside photos where it's real tight, again, try not to point up or down and think ahead about cropping the picture later
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