Bokeh... from Wikepedia
In photography, bokeh (Originally play /ˈboʊkɛ/, play /ˈboʊkeɪ/ boh-kay, and also sometimes heard as play /ˈboʊkə/ boh-kə, Japanese: [boke]) is the blur, or the aesthetic quality of the blur, in out-of-focus areas of an image, or “the way the lens renders out-of-focus points of light.“
BOKEH it’s a technique that 99% of us photographers ADORE!
So why not be creative with it, really use it as a full prop in your photography sessions.
Here at PI, we put together a quick tutorial that will hopefully help us EASILY grasp how SIMPLE this lil trick can be… ready for it?
WE thought so!
First of all.. here are some samples to get you grooving into your bokeh mood…
#1 by our Fabulous own Lindsey Mills…
Ps, you should check out her facebook page, Click Here for some prop inspiration, and see all of her heart shaped bokeh shots…
Now here are a few of my own shots, with a pull back below…
First… blowing heart shaped kisses!
(when I did my edit above… I 1) burned out the Christmas light wires and than 2) painted over the hearts that were out of the “kiss blow” area)
(again, I burnt out the wires for the lights…)…
Its very similar to our HOLIDAY BACKDROP how to,
just shooting with a lens cover in the shape of a heart.
So, here it is…
Now, how easy is this? SIMPLE DIMPLE!
Well, it’s a million times easier than I originally thought it to be.. I guess it just looked more dramatic than the process actually is… so here is the groove junkies…
First of all.. you need to do a simple cut & paste with your lens…
CUT into a black piece of paper a small heart shape
(for a 50mm lens, the shape should be roughly 25mm in size).
Then cut the paper to match the circumference of your lens and tape it directly around… as seen in the picture below
(or head to PhotoJoJo to buy precut shapes!)
(sorry for the ho’dunk image above lol)
Second, set up your lights (Christmas lights are great!) in the background
(I clipped them right to my black backdrop)…
Next, place your subject 1/2 way between you and the backdrop.. remember, bokeh works only when you have a foreground subject to focus on..
leaving the lights in the background to BLUR bokeh style.
Lastly… set your camera to its lowest aperture… a 50mm lens is best for this, using as wideopen as you can (1.8-1.4 is fabulous).. and SHOOT!
Now if you’re like me, your still confused on how this happened?!
Yep, I fully admit.. I’m NOT book smart,
I need to SEE a pull back to understand how it happens.
Some basic questions… ANSWERED!
Is this s a composite of 2 images?
Nope, you are using 1 image… shoot through your “new lens”
(shape attached/taped to front of lens)
and shoot directly AT your subject (not the lights).
The lights in the background will then blur (bokeh) and give you hearts.
YES you can see right through that tiny heart to your subject 🙂
I’m shooting through the lens, but all I see is a vignette?
You need to make sure you have a foreground subject.. shooting the lights directly wont give you any bokeh, hence no hearts.
I dont have a 50mm, what can I use?
Even if you dont have a 50mm, a lens with as low as 2.8 is still good, you just have to set your subject further away from the backdrop so you get the bokeh affect.
How do you cut the shape?
I simply bent my paper in 1/2 and cut the heart shape,
but you can buy small shape punchers at stores like Michaels crafts etc
Looking for more great info on this subject?
Check out this video tutorial by Michael Warf, Click Here
Or this great article from DIY Photography, Click Here,
and if you want some real great ideas, check out this flickr search… Click Here .
There is inspiration everywhere!!!
And who doesnt LOVE LOVE LOVE some fabulous bokeh?!