How to take photos with a blurry background

If you wondered how to make the background in the photo blurry so that using the correct focus only the most important element in the photo is highlighted, then you will find useful information from this article :).

Blurred back and front background. My photo. F2.0, 50mm, ISO 200, 4000 ', Helios-81n, Nikon D40

Blurred background and foreground. My photo. F2.0, 50mm, ISO 200, 4000 ′, Helios-81n, Nikon D40


The blurred background in the photo can be in two main ways:

1. Using the camera settings
2. Using software

Blurred photo

Blurred photo


On the blurring power and creating bokeh is the strongest The following physical parameters affect:

  1. Geometric aperture lens, it’s the same aperture. The smaller the F number, the finer the depth of field (depth of sharply depicted space) and the more the background and background are blurred.
  2. The focal length of the lens. The larger the focal length of the lens, the more the background will be blurred.
  3. Focusing distance to the subject. The shorter the focus distance (the distance between the camera and what you shoot), the more blurred the background.
  4. The distance between the subject and the background. The farther the background from the subject, the more blurry it is.
  5. Optical design (more specifically affects the nature of the blur). The better the optical design, the more pleasant the bokeh :)
  6. Indirectly affects matrix size the camera. More than matrix size, the more viewing angle and the closer you need to get to the subject, which, in fact, rests on the 3rd point. Therefore, they argue that full-format cameras blur the background more strongly than cropped. Speaking rudely, the more crop factorthe harder it is to blur the background.
  7. Also, blurring is affected by special nozzles and filters on the lens. Here an example of a simple home-made Center Spot filter.

You can also blur the background using special graphic editors. But, of course, a more natural and natural blurring of the background occurs directly when shooting. In order to blur the background with the camera as much as possible, you need to configure it correctly.

What is the best way to set up your camera

1. Need to maximize aperture... F-number is usually responsible for the aperture. It is very convenient to take photos with a blurred background in the aperture priority mode, which is indicated on the camera mode dial by the letters'A' or 'Av'. Open - means to decrease the F number. For example, the F3.5 aperture value is greater than the F5.6 aperture value. If, for example, the camera is set to F8.0, then to open the aperture you need to lower it to the minimum allowable, usually F5.6, F3.5, F2.8. On fast lenses, even F1.8 and F1.4 can be set. For example, on a piece of paper I printed “This is the background” and to blur it I first shot at F / 1.4, and in order to develop it more, I shot at 16.0

The effect of the aperture on the depth of field and on the blurriness of the background

The effect of the aperture on the depth of field and on the blurriness of the background

2. You need the maximum focal length on your existing lens (that is, unscrew the zoom to maximum). Than more will be the focal length, the easier it will be to blur the background. To do this, you should make the maximum approximation on a digital camera, and on a SLR - simply transfer the lens to the focal length with the maximum number. For example, if you have a standard '18 -55mm 'class lens, then it will be best to blur the background at 55mm (at the maximum extreme position with the largest number of focal lengths). On a regular digital camera (aka 'soapbox'), sometimes you can simply turn on the macro mode, while the lens itself is set to the maximum focal length.

Sample photo with blurry background

Sample photo with blurry background

3. Finally, get as close as possible to the subject you are shooting. The closer the subject is to the lens, the stronger the blur. In this case, the lens will focus closer and closer. Just see that the frame is well-arranged, otherwise you can shoot something completely different from what was planned.

Sample photo with blurry background

Sample photo with blurry background


Boke

Of course, many have heard of bokeh. Bokeh is the nature of the background blur, including its intensity. If the lens blurs the background well, then the lens is said to have good bokeh. There is a lot of debate about the beauty of bokeh - which lens is better or worse. Bokeh has its own plasticity, distortions, twisting, etc., the feeling of beauty of bokeh comes with experience and each has its own.

Sample photo with blurry background. Soft bokeh

Sample photo with blurry background. Soft bokeh


Chasing bokeh

The pursuit of better bokeh is a comparison of a huge number of shots, all sorts of arguments in favor of a particular lens, which leads to the pursuit of fast and long-focus lenses, which cost a lot of money.

Sample photo with blurry background

Sample photo with blurry background


Which lens blurs the background the most

Coming from previous thoughts, the lens with a large focal length and large aperture... For example, 50mm lenses blur the background well - lenses with a XNUMXmm focal length and a large aperture F1.4, the short telephones of the 135mm F2.0 type blur the background even more strongly, the 200 mm F2.0 telephones are even stronger, and so on. But the longer the focal length and the larger aperture, the more expensive the lens. Therefore, usually amateurs stop at a fifty-kopeck piece of the 50mm F1.4 type, or on a dark, but long-focus telephoto lens of the 70-300mm F4.0-5.6 type. Which lens is best for you - it depends only on your personal considerations.

Sample photo with blurry background

Sample photo with blurry background


More thoughts about blurring

If you delve into the subtleties of what affects the bokeh more, then it is difficult to reach a consensus, but please note that sometimes the focal length affects more than aperture the lens. Also, the blur of the background is indirectly affected by the size of the sensor for the same lens. So on full-frame cameras they say that blur is stronger with the same lens. The depth of field of the lens does not change - it is a physical quantity. So what's the catch? And the catch is that the focusing distance of the lens changes to compose the same frame. And of course, the farther the background is from the subject, the more it will blur. By the way, short-focus lenses with large aperture it’s better to blur the background, which is close to the subject.

Background blur in a full-length portrait

Background blur in a full-length portrait


Photoshop will also help

If the picture is taken and you want to blur the background, then Photoshop or another program will come to the rescue. There are a lot of blur methods and I will not dwell on them.

What is blurring the front and back (far) plan in general?

What is blurring the front and back (far) plan in general?


Conclusions:

For maximum blur, shoot with the widest aperture and the maximum focal length of your lens. In this case, the further the distance between the background and the subject is and the closer the distance between the camera and the subject, the more the background will be blurred. If the camera cannot provide a normal blur, you can finish it in a special program, such as Photoshop.

↓↓↓ Like it :) ↓↓↓ Thank you for your attention. Arkady Shapoval.

Add a comment: Andrei

 

 

Comments: 444, on the topic: How to take pictures with a blurred background

  • Sergei

    Hello. Help to be determined please. On the nikon d3100, I need a fix for shooting small objects (about the size of a mug or a glass, sometimes smaller). I consider either the standard fifty-kopeck Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f / 1.8G, or 35mm Nikon DX AF-S NIKKOR 35mm 1 / 1.8G Which one will give the best blur and bokeh? We need about the same result as in the photo, this photo from the arsat h manual glass

    • Andrei

      Are you considering only these two lens options?

      • Sergei

        Yes

        • Michael

          And if you try the good old Helios44-M4? With the correct setting, it has a very narrow depth of field with good blur ... Moreover, the price of Helios is a patch for a beam.

          • Sergei

            There are 44-2,44m-6 and arsat H. They all suit me with a picture. I want an autofocus fix for the reason that it is not always convenient with a manual one. I am considering these two glasses due to an extremely limited budget.

            • Andrei

              If you have experience with Helios, then take 50 mm.

            • Seladir

              Arsat H is fifty dollars, so if a similar result, then take fifty Nikon.

  • Alexander

    Informative article. Please advise an inexpensive camera for shooting videos in 4K and with the best background blur.

    • Andrei

      Medium Format Fuji.

  • Tanita

    Thank you very clearly explained

  • Leonid

    Excellent.

Add a comment

christening photographer price Photography for lovers

Copyright © Radojuva.com. Blog author - Photographer in Kiev Arkady Shapoval. 2009-2021

English-version of this article https://radojuva.com/en/2012/01/dof-best-lens-photo/?replytocom=421727