Tuesday, July 2, 2013

July - Depth of Field

Time for our July blog circle, with a great group of photography friends.  This month we are sharing on Depth of Field.  Depth of field is controlled by the aperture of your lens and allows you to isolate your subject in a plane of focus.  That sound's a bit technical but this is one of my favorite photography techniques! The aperture ring controls how much light is allowed in your camera.  By opening it up you get more light and also a shallow depth of field, which means only a sliver of focus.  By closing the aperture down you get less light but a larger area of focus and can also create some great starbursts when photographing the sun!  Without further mumble jumble on the subject, here are my favorite photos from June, that show a very shallow depth of field.

1. Do you see the sliver of focus on the nose and finger and car?  Here I drew attention to that part of the story by intentionally using a very shallow depth of field, allowing only those things to be in focus. 
ISO 500 50mm f1.6 1/320s

2.  In this image I kept it soft and peaceful, as well as drew attention to his sweet features by keeping the focus plane shallow and only focusing on the plane which has the light falling across it, thus using light and focus to draw attention to his features.  ISO 6400 85mm f2.0 1/100s

 3.  Here I wanted to draw attention to his profile and gaze, so I kept my field shallow, effectively making him stand out against the blurry background. ISO 6400 50mm f2.0 1/40s

 4.  The next few photos is a series of progression.  My focus plane was the basket on the table.  You can see the ball move into the focus plane through the progression.  Settings: ISO 400 50 mm f 2.0 1/320s

5.  This photo is an example of shallow depth of field not working!   I love everything about this photo except that his hand is not in focus.  I was focusing on his eyes, with a shallow depth of field when he pointed, thus his hand is blurry.  Had I closed my aperture down a bit, I would have enlarged my area of focus and gotten his hand in focus as well.  ISO100 50mm f2.0 1/1250s

6.  Lastly is this example of the fun you can have by closing your aperture all the way down, thus getting a wide range of focus and creating some fun starbursts while you are at it. ISO800 28mm f16 1/400s

I hope you've enjoyed this little mini tutorial on Depth of Field and are expired to grab you camera and experiment!  You can see more examples of this technique by continuing through our circle.  Next up is Kristen , go check out what she is sharing today!!!


  1. I love all your images!! Love that first one with the car @f1,6 that slither of focus is perfect and awesome star burst! xx

  2. Lovely work! I espcially love the light in your second and third shots!