Posts Tagged ‘Shallow depth of field’

Taking great photos with your kit lens

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Interchangeable Lens Cameras are often sold in kits containing a basic zoom lens. Because these lenses come with the camera as part of a kit, they are often referred to as 'kit lenses'.

The kit lens depends on the camera, but it is practically always a zoom. Often it is something like an 18-55mm for an APS-C camera, 24-100mm for a full frame camera, or 14-24mm for a m4/3 camera. These are all roughly equivalent.

The kit lens lets you go from wide-angle to short telephoto and everything in between. It's a good all-round general purpose lens.

Often you may read disparaging remarks about kit lenses. For sure, they're not the sharpest lenses around, and they don't have fast apertures for easily creating smooth and creamy out of focus backgrounds. But they're surprisingly useful and can give great results when you play to their strengths.

Taking great photos with your kit lens

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Written by Discover Digital Photography

July 10th, 2016 at 3:15 pm

Selective Focus Photography Tips

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Selective focus is a very useful technique for drawing the viewer's attention to a certain area of an image. Typically, though not always, the area you want to draw attention to will be the subject of the photo. By having the subject in sharp focus, but the rest of the image blurry, the eye is naturally drawn towards the sharp area of the image.

Selective focus can be achieved in-camera but can also be added to an image later using image editing software. In this article we'll look at both techniques.

Selective Focus Photography Tips

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Written by Discover Digital Photography

June 14th, 2015 at 5:29 pm

Ten things your camera can see that your eyes can’t

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Often in photography, the problem we feel we have is that the photos we take don't match what we saw at the time. The way the camera works is quite different from the human eye. While there is nothing wrong with trying to capture what you saw, have you ever thought about using your camera to capture what you can't see?

In this article I'll cover 10 things that your camera can see but you can't, with an added bonus point at the end. Capturing photos that don't exactly match what you see with your eyes can often give stronger images than just an exact record of reality.

Ten things your camera can see that your eyes can't

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Creating a shallow DOF effect using Topaz Lens Effects and onOne FocalPoint 2

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In the last two articles we've looked at how to use a shallow depth of field to blur the background using in-camera techniques, and how to replicate the effect using Photoshop or other image editing software. In this article I want to look at a couple of more advanced ways of blurring the background using image editing software.

We'll look at two specialist programs that can replicate the effect of a shallow depth of field, along with a large variety of other lens effects. First we have Lens Effects by Topaz Labs, then we have FocalPoint2 by onOne Software. We'll use the same two images used in the previous article so you can compare the results of each technique against each other.

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How to simulate a shallow depth of field and blur the background in Photoshop Elements and CS

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In this article we'll look at how to use image editing software to blur the background of a photo while keeping the subject sharp. This is a good way to help draw viewer's attention to your subject, rather than the background.

Although it is best to achieve a blurred background in-camera (see previous article: How to take photos with a blurred background by using a shallow depth of field), this is not always possible. In this case we can use image editing software to simulate the effect of a shallow depth of field instead.

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How to take photos with a blurred background by using a shallow depth of field

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We've all seen beautiful photos where the subject is in focus but the background is blurred. These sorts of photos may seem difficult to create. But with an understanding of depth of field, you can make photos like this too.

In this article we'll look how you can achieve a shallow depth of field to create photos with a blurred background.

The Aggressive Black Drongo!
The Aggressive Black Drongo! by VinothChandar on flickr (licensed CC-BY)

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Written by Discover Digital Photography

February 1st, 2013 at 10:12 am