The tilt-shift effect can be used on photographs to make the subject appear to be, rather than a full scale photograph, a miniaturized scene. Tilt-shift lenses, which can be quite expensive, achieve this effect by focusing on a single aspect of the shot and shifting the focal plane (blurring) the surrounding areas to create the optical illusion of smallness in any subject, from houses, to cars, to freight trains.
Photo by Dan Davison
While an actual tilt-shift lens may be the optimal way to achieve this look, photo editing softwares such as Photoshop or Gimp can help you get very similar results in just a few simple steps. It’s a fun technique that plays with the power of perception, tricking the eye into viewing the objects in focus as adorable and toy-sized.
Photo by Eduardo Millo
Photo by Fabian Ortiz
Voila! The tilt-shift effect is complete. Feel free to try this out on your photographs, and post the results in the comments below.