Clear subject, blur backgrounds. How do you do it?


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Gr|ever

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I notice that one of the technique of taking nice potrait shots is making the subject clear & blur background. And I read up on many articles regarding this. To do that, we will have to adjust the aperture. So I tried experimenting with my digicam. I took pictures with maximum aperture for one & minimum aperture for another. But somehow, I ended up with 2, almost identicle pictures. Both with clear background & subject. Why is dat so??! :dunno:

Can anyone help me on this? I'm using a Fuji S602Z digicam. Thanx.
 

azone

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#2
Originally posted by Gr|ever
I notice that one of the technique of taking nice potrait shots is making the subject clear & blur background. And I read up on many articles regarding this. To do that, we will have to adjust the aperture. So I tried experimenting with my digicam. I took pictures with maximum aperture for one & minimum aperture for another. But somehow, I ended up with 2, almost identicle pictures. Both with clear background & subject. Why is dat so??! :dunno:

Can anyone help me on this? I'm using a Fuji S602Z digicam. Thanx.
It is more difficult to achieve this effect using a digital camera compared to an SLR/DSLR. How far is the background away from the subject? And did you use zoom? A further background coupled with using long zoom and large aperture will achieve this effect better.
 

yamashita

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For a blur background using a SLR, use a large aperture.

But since you are using digital, i not sure le. :)
 

mylau

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#4
Originally posted by Gr|ever
I notice that one of the technique of taking nice potrait shots is making the subject clear & blur background. And I read up on many articles regarding this. To do that, we will have to adjust the aperture. So I tried experimenting with my digicam. I took pictures with maximum aperture for one & minimum aperture for another. But somehow, I ended up with 2, almost identicle pictures. Both with clear background & subject. Why is dat so??! :dunno:

Can anyone help me on this? I'm using a Fuji S602Z digicam. Thanx.
try:

Set the aperture to the largest, i think it is f2.8?

Set the zoom to the maximum (ie..your subject has to be far away)

Make sure your background is a distance away from the subject.

then:

if all fails, use photoshop :D
 

eug

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#5
zoom to longest focal length and use largest aperture. If it doesn't work, I'm afraid your cam doesn't have the capability!
 

Gr|ever

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#6
Originally posted by azone

It is more difficult to achieve this effect using a digital camera compared to an SLR/DSLR. How far is the background away from the subject? And did you use zoom? A further background coupled with using long zoom and large aperture will achieve this effect better.
I tried taking a subject about a meter away, inside my room, which is an average HDB room. And the effect I got is clear picture overall. The only time I can get the effect I want is macro shots. The background is nicely blurred.

Hmm... if I have to move so close to the subject to have the effect I want, does that mean I'm unable to do a full body potrait? And if that's the case, what's the point of aperture settings if it doesn't change anything at all? :dunno:
 

azone

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#7
Originally posted by Gr|ever


I tried taking a subject about a meter away, inside my room, which is an average HDB room. And the effect I got is clear picture overall. The only time I can get the effect I want is macro shots. The background is nicely blurred.

Hmm... if I have to move so close to the subject to have the effect I want, does that mean I'm unable to do a full body potrait? And if that's the case, what's the point of aperture settings if it doesn't change anything at all? :dunno:
A meter seems too close for you to utilise high zoom and at the same time capture a full body. You need to stand further away from the subject and zoom in. A hdb flat room will not offer a background that is quite far away either. This explains why you're not able to achieve the effect.

You'll be able to achieve this effect easier outdoor.
 

Gr|ever

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Okok... lemmie summarise. So I should:
- go outdoor
- stand furthur away from subject
- zoom in on the subject
- set aperture to largest

Is that it?
 

azone

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#10
Originally posted by Gr|ever
Okok... lemmie summarise. So I should:
- go outdoor
- stand furthur away from subject
- zoom in on the subject
- set aperture to largest

Is that it?
Yup yup, and preferably the background is far away from the subject too. Dun worry, i've tried this with the 602 as well. It'll works. ;)
 

Gr|ever

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#11
Okok... thanx a lot! I'll try it out next time. :thumbsup:

But I dun get aperture now. What I think of aperture setting now is.... either you set it to maximum or minimum. Either you want everything clear or juz the subject. So there isn't much use for anything in between?

Originally posted by Newbie123
Hmm.... Why dun u use the Potrait setting under the Scene mode.
There is a "Potrait" mode for my cam. It's meant for potrait shots. Dunno how good it is though....
 

mervlam

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#12
Originally posted by azone

It is more difficult to achieve this effect using a digital camera compared to an SLR/DSLR. How far is the background away from the subject? And did you use zoom? A further background coupled with using long zoom and large aperture will achieve this effect better.
Shallow DOF results from these factors:
1) Large aperture, eg. f/2.8
2) Long focal length
3) Far background
4) Shorter subject to lens distance (that's why people use f/8 or f/16 for macros. the DOF is too shallow at f/2.8!)
 

kindred

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#13
Originally posted by mylau


try:

Set the aperture to the largest, i think it is f2.8?

Set the zoom to the maximum (ie..your subject has to be far away)

Make sure your background is a distance away from the subject.

then:

if all fails, use photoshop :D
wondering how to use PS to make the background blur ?
 

azone

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#14
Originally posted by Gr|ever
Okok... thanx a lot! I'll try it out next time. :thumbsup:

But I dun get aperture now. What I think of aperture setting now is.... either you set it to maximum or minimum. Either you want everything clear or juz the subject. So there isn't much use for anything in between?



There is a "Potrait" mode for my cam. It's meant for potrait shots. Dunno how good it is though....
Its not true that you can only use either smallest or largest aperture. For example if you have a group shot where there are 3 persons in front row and 2 persons behind. F2.8 may result in the front row sharp and the 2 ppl behind a little out-of focus. In this case, you many need to use F4-F5 to get them all in focus.

I've never tried portrait mode as well. Its better to set the aperture/shutter yourself so that you can learn in the process. :)
 

Tweek

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#15
Gr|ever, to maximise the shallow DOF effect, maybe this is the more complete steps you should try:

1) set the largest aperture, e.g. f2.8
2) zoom in to the max
3) start moving forward and backwards until the closest distance u can get to your subject but still preserving the composition you want
4) rotate, pan, shift to choose a background that is the farthest away.

and SNAP away!
 

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#16
I don't know what lens' focal range is coupled with your 602.
But, I suspect that you've used the minimum range (or wide angle so to speak) which notably has the greatest depth of field.

Meaning that your picture will be sharp or in focus from anything that is positioned between 2, 3 or 4 metres away (depending on specification of the wide angle lens) till infinity.

So, by using a small or large aperture on a wide angle lens for a subject that is situated between, say, 2 metres to infinity, you will get that similar ALL IN FOCUS effect.


If however your query is not because you have zoomed in to wide angle, then please consult the comments already left by others.
 

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