Originally Posted by Michael R 1974
Focusing on the ground glass and assessing tilt/swing etc is a challenge for everybody, as is estimting distance. I've watched as friends battled over a long period of time to correct focus, adjust tilt, refocus and readjust, all in the dim, wet surrounds of a cold rainforest. And here we've got people saying "it's easy!" Rubbish! I would not bother with LF now with so much fiddling necessary when I can do the same thing, faster and with better eyesight facilitation with 35mm. So really, the focusing it is certainly not something that lends itself to speed or for that matter, accuracy, with any doubt left to be covered by depth of field. Only the mathematical part is accurate (to a point). Everything else is done visually to the best of your perrsonal capacity. This deep technical and mathematical stuff is so totally unnecessary and anal that anybody concentrating just on those things will certainly get a picture (eventually!) but viewers are not going to be any more the wiser (or better informed) at picking up what was done. Of all my images made with applied tilt, not even my old uni Professor picked up the introduction of tilt and extensible DofF/focus peg until it was discussed what I found wrong with the scene and how it was corrected. That is to say that none of the effects will be visible and their merits will be open to judgement irrespective of what the photographer was trying to achieve.
I will point out that depth of field "rules" (or standard placement marks) do not apply when tilt or swing is introduced. The other thing that I learnt in the early 1990s was that ultrawide angle LF lenses e.g. 65mm, will not benefit from any tilt or swing because of inherent great depth of field. Even if you wished to, following with accuracy the movement(s) would see the vast majority of people give it up. In a nutshell, just go out and play with the camera, introducing whatever movements you want to, record notes of what you are doing, shoot and inspect the prints or trannies (not negatives).