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Thread: How to increase background blur?

  1. #21
    Senior Member rain5533's Avatar
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    I have the highly recommended on free download of Picasa 3.x version can edit and use OOF blur the background image.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights
    photoshop.....

    yeah... don't want to move close, don't want to lose background....... this can not that can not, so yeah photoshop
    So in summary, other than
    1) increase distance of subject from background
    2) reduce distance of photographer to subject
    3) photoshop/post processing

    There are no other techniques to increase the background blur even slightly?
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  3. #23
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by vagus View Post
    So in summary, other than
    1) increase distance of subject from background
    2) reduce distance of photographer to subject
    3) photoshop/post processing

    There are no other techniques to increase the background blur even slightly?
    you can use a longer focal length lens, it forces you to change the distance between camera to subject or subject to background.


    or shoot a smaller subject instead, it will also force you to change the distances of camera to subject or subject to background.




    so yes, back to the square one.
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  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by vagus

    So in summary, other than
    1) increase distance of subject from background
    2) reduce distance of photographer to subject
    3) photoshop/post processing

    There are no other techniques to increase the background blur even slightly?
    If you are working with limitations, your options are pretty much limited too..
    Too many great equipments but too little quality photos. [My Flickr] | [My Blog]

  5. #25
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    so, what so difficult to say;

    can we all take a few steps forward?, (than you move a few steps backward, the subject to background distance is further now)


    can we move over here? it has nice background here.





    btw, nobody care much about the "niceness" background except photographers themselves,
    they are more interest on who is in the photos.
    so unless you intend to shoot award wining photos or saleable photos, else keep it simple and take it easy.
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  6. #26
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by SkyStrike View Post
    If you are working with limitations, your options are pretty much limited too..
    I understand that part, just want to check with the experts here on advanced tips/techniques I may not have already known....
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  7. #27
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    so, what so difficult to say;

    can we all take a few steps forward?, (than you move a few steps backward, the subject to background distance is further now)


    can we move over here? it has nice background here.





    btw, nobody care much about the "niceness" background except photographers themselves,
    they are more interest on who is in the photos.
    so unless you intend to shoot award wining photos or saleable photos, else keep it simple and take it easy.
    Give you an example, my 10 month old boy don't really respond to "Boyboy, can you crawl 3 bodylength towards Daddy? and after you are done please smile for the camera ok?"

    Usually a nice prime for portrait is around 50mm, so the working distance is pretty much limited by the fixed focal length. This limitation is especially felt in shooting indoor shoots.

    I have to respectfully disagree with background comment, as I feel that even when out of focus, the background contributes to the story or feel of the photo. Eg. a smiling baby with a blank wall as background versus a smiling baby with his toys behind him and mother in the background ready to brace him in case he falls.

    I'm no professional and do not intend to be one, just trying to increase my knowledge to take decent looking photos using entry level interchangeable lens camera. Or else a simple nice PnS (eg. my LX3) would have suffice for all applications.
    Last edited by vagus; 22nd October 2012 at 10:05 AM.
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  8. #28
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by vagus View Post
    Give you an example, my 10 month old boy don't really respond to "Boyboy, can you crawl 3 bodylength towards Daddy? and after you are done please smile for the camera ok?"

    Usually a nice prime for portrait is around 50mm, so the working distance is pretty much limited by the fixed focal length. This limitation is especially felt in shooting indoor shoots.

    I'm no professional and do not intend to be one, just trying to increase my knowledge to take decent looking photos using entry level interchangeable lens camera. Or else a simple nice PnS (eg. my LX3) would have suffice for all applications.
    On the "nice prime for portrait" bit, there isn't a hard and fast rule on whether which focal length is the "best" or nicest to use. It all depends on the composition and other factors (Lighting, expressions etc).

    And on a note, 60mm on crop is reaaaally tight... esp indoors. For a period of time, I was struggling with 50mm on crop when trying to take a shot of my nephew (currently 1 yr old). It was till I realize that there are workarounds it.
    - One of which is to shoot only when there's enough space (which is pretty much limited in a HDB flat),
    - Change the composition. Instead of framing with background, go for close up?
    - Use a slower lens (17-50 f2.8) and push the ISO.
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  9. #29

    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by vagus View Post
    Give you an example, my 10 month old boy don't really respond to "Boyboy, can you crawl 3 bodylength towards Daddy? and after you are done please smile for the camera ok?"

    Usually a nice prime for portrait is around 50mm, so the working distance is pretty much limited by the fixed focal length. This limitation is especially felt in shooting indoor shoots.

    I have to respectfully disagree with background comment, as I feel that even when out of focus, the background contributes to the story or feel of the photo. Eg. a smiling baby with a blank wall as background versus a smiling baby with his toys behind him and mother in the background ready to brace him in case he falls.

    I'm no professional and do not intend to be one, just trying to increase my knowledge to take decent looking photos using entry level interchangeable lens camera. Or else a simple nice PnS (eg. my LX3) would have suffice for all applications.
    at 10 months, you are right, they will not respond to your "Boyboy, can you crawl 3 bodylength towards Daddy?". I will just carry them up and lay them where i want them.

  10. #30
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by TigerOyster View Post
    at 10 months, you are right, they will not respond to your "Boyboy, can you crawl 3 bodylength towards Daddy?". I will just carry them up and lay them where i want them.
    LOL, not when he is already sitting and crawling.....no way he will lay down there for you to shoot. The only way (and the way I like it) is to catch them unaware when they are playing. Babies don't do posed shots well....
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  11. #31
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by vagus View Post
    LOL, not when he is already sitting and crawling.....no way he will lay down there for you to shoot. The only way (and the way I like it) is to catch them unaware when they are playing. Babies don't do posed shots well....
    And before you know it, they have already crawled to your side already...
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  12. #32

    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by vagus View Post
    LOL, not when he is already sitting and crawling.....no way he will lay down there for you to shoot. The only way (and the way I like it) is to catch them unaware when they are playing. Babies don't do posed shots well....
    Babies at this stage of development cannot "see" with their eyes,ie. focus like older children.At best see shapes,colour but can't in hell focus.
    That's why they have that blur/lovely look.More likely they use their hearing like bat's echo location more to zoom in to the voices of people caring for them like their parents.

  13. #33

    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    hi, sorry if high jack this thread if deem to be.

    you seen , if i have 2 persons in protrait, say 1 m apart, how to take the photo in a way , the foucs is on the 2 person , say half body and teh background blur?

    thanks

  14. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by buzzmario
    hi, sorry if high jack this thread if deem to be.

    you seen , if i have 2 persons in protrait, say 1 m apart, how to take the photo in a way , the foucs is on the 2 person , say half body and teh background blur?

    thanks
    speak english?

  15. #35
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by buzzmario View Post
    hi, sorry if high jack this thread if deem to be.

    you seen , if i have 2 persons in protrait, say 1 m apart, how to take the photo in a way , the foucs is on the 2 person , say half body and teh background blur?

    thanks
    Been discussed before in another thread.
    2 ways
    - increase the DOF enough to get the 2 person in focus
    - take 2 photo. Each photo with only one person in focus, then use photoshop to stack 2 different picture together.
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  16. #36
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by vagus View Post
    Give you an example, my 10 month old boy don't really respond to "Boyboy, can you crawl 3 bodylength towards Daddy? and after you are done please smile for the camera ok?"

    Usually a nice prime for portrait is around 50mm, so the working distance is pretty much limited by the fixed focal length. This limitation is especially felt in shooting indoor shoots.

    I have to respectfully disagree with background comment, as I feel that even when out of focus, the background contributes to the story or feel of the photo. Eg. a smiling baby with a blank wall as background versus a smiling baby with his toys behind him and mother in the background ready to brace him in case he falls.

    I'm no professional and do not intend to be one, just trying to increase my knowledge to take decent looking photos using entry level interchangeable lens camera. Or else a simple nice PnS (eg. my LX3) would have suffice for all applications.
    in which part of your post you ever mention you are shooting a 10 months old before my post? trying to trap me? lol


    read my second part of my post again,

    you shooting for your baby or background?

    which is more important?

    if background is so important to you, than take all the elements in the photos treat them like products and props, arrange them and set up the shots accordingly, take test shots after test shots till you get it right, that is how we shoot a commercial shoot.
    nobody dare to say he just need to aim at the camera there, BANG! that is the shot straight out from the camera and it is perfect.


    don't try to complicate a shoot of unnecessary, probably no one will pay much attention on the background.
    Last edited by catchlights; 22nd October 2012 at 06:04 PM.
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  17. #37
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    in which part of your post you ever mention you are shooting a 10 months old before my post? trying to trap me? lol


    read my second part of my post again,

    you shooting for your baby or background?

    which is more important?

    if background is so important to you, than take all the elements in the photos treat them like products and props, arrange them and set up the shots accordingly, take test shots after test shots till you get it right, that is how we shoot a commercial shoot.
    nobody dare to say he just need to aim at the camera there, BANG! that is the shot straight out from the camera and it is perfect.


    don't try to complicate a shoot of unnecessary, probably no one will pay much attention on the background.
    Nah, not trying to trap anyone, just letting you know that there are many other situations that limits the shooting condition which we cannot necessarily control.

    Of course baby is the main focus, background is secondary but both combine to help tell a story in my opinion.

    take example this pic i got off the net as illustration

    without the mother in the bckground the feel of the photo will be very different...

    I think not complicating matters is a good advice, I'm saying I'm not trying to complicate it by insisting on the impossible, if the experts say it cannot be done, then so be it, I will live with the limitations.
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  18. #38

    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by vagus View Post
    Nah, not trying to trap anyone, just letting you know that there are many other situations that limits the shooting condition which we cannot necessarily control.

    Of course baby is the main focus, background is secondary but both combine to help tell a story in my opinion.

    take example this pic i got off the net as illustration

    without the mother in the bckground the feel of the photo will be very different...

    I think not complicating matters is a good advice, I'm saying I'm not trying to complicate it by insisting on the impossible, if the experts say it cannot be done, then so be it, I will live with the limitations.

    ok the focus is on the baby, but the father seem to be on focus too where the mother is blur. so how this pix is taken?

  19. #39
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by vagus View Post
    Nah, not trying to trap anyone, just letting you know that there are many other situations that limits the shooting condition which we cannot necessarily control.

    Of course baby is the main focus, background is secondary but both combine to help tell a story in my opinion.

    take example this pic i got off the net as illustration

    without the mother in the bckground the feel of the photo will be very different...

    I think not complicating matters is a good advice, I'm saying I'm not trying to complicate it by insisting on the impossible, if the experts say it cannot be done, then so be it, I will live with the limitations.
    this shot can be done very easily, you can very the distance of father/baby and the camera to get the degree of blur you want, eg, want more blur, move father/baby and camera away from the background, less blur than move closer to mother.

    these kind of shots was commonly seen on traditional pose wedding portrait in the west, is a must have shot, where focusing on the bride, and parents of the bride pose at the background looking at the bride, in defoucs.

    btw, it is a set up shot, it does not happen naturally.
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  20. #40

    Default Re: How to increase background blur?

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    this shot can be done very easily, you can very the distance of father/baby and the camera to get the degree of blur you want, eg, want more blur, move father/baby and camera away from the background, less blur than move closer to mother.

    these kind of shots was commonly seen on traditional pose wedding portrait in the west, is a must have shot, where focusing on the bride, and parents of the bride pose at the background looking at the bride, in defoucs.

    btw, it is a set up shot, it does not happen naturally.
    Definitely set up, with natural window light shining on rear of fathers head and front of infant's face and body (yellowish), and flash from front lighting obviously on right of father's right face, button, ring, fingernails, spectacle frame, shirt right sleeve etc (whitish)

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