Aberration, also known as “color fringing,” refers to the effect in which light passing through a lens becomes blurred and produces a fuzzy image on the film. If the camera lens is unable to focus light of different wavelengths or if the lens is scratched or otherwise damaged, chromatic aberration of the final image will occur.
In a normal lens where aberration doesn’t occur, the lens directs light of different wavelengths to specific areas of the film, depending on the particular wavelength. This process results in a balanced, clear and sharp image on the resulting photo. However, when this process doesn’t occur, aberration distorts the color and clarity of the original image, ruining the resulting pictures. Often, the edges of the pictures are the most distorted areas.
Aberration can occur in six different ways:
+ Astigmatism aberration
+ Chromatic aberration
+ Coma aberration
+ Curvature of field aberration
+ Distortion aberration
+ Spherical aberration.
Although some photographers generally consider aberration to be a negative photographic effect, others have used it to artistic effect. By intentionally blurring parts of a photo, the photographer can effectively comment on the distorted features or nature of the subject that he is photographing.
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