Flowers + Shallow Depth of Field

Discussion in 'User Created Art' started by Druid of Lûhn, Apr 13, 2012.

  1. Druid of Lûhn

    Druid of Lûhn The Little Lamb.

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    I finally realised how to get a shallow depth of field when using a camera with a fixed lens (can't remove/change it).
    It only works with long zooms (26x optical for me) but gives great results:
    These pictures were taken in Hampton Court gardens on Thursday 05/04/2012.
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  2. Running Wolf

    Running Wolf Join the Madness

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    beautiful, Druid!
     
  3. gumboot

    gumboot lorcutus.tolere

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    Four things affect depth of field;
    Patch size (physical size of the chip/film being exposed to light)
    Focal length (distance between the chip/film and the focal point of the lens)
    Aperture (how much light is being let through the lens, usually given in f-stops)
    Focal distance (distance between the lens and the subject)

    Of these, you can generally only change the last three, as the patch size is (obviously) fixed for the camera.

    To achieve minimum depth of field you want to do the following;
    1. Use the largest focal length you can - this means if you have a zoom lens, zoom in as far as you can go (this only applies for optical zoom, a digital zoom is artificial, and does nothing)
    2. Use the largest aperture you can - this mean "open up" the lens as far as you can, which in turn means the lowest "f-stop" you can get (f3.5 is good, f1.4 is better, f22 is bad). If you're using a fixed lens camera it's quite likely you can't manually control aperture, but if you can't you might be able to force the camera to open the aperture wider if you have control over other settings:
    a) Reduce the ISO number.
    b) Increase the shutter speed.
    Both of these will increase the amount of light required to get a correct exposure, which will force the aperture open.
    3. Reduce the focal distance as much as you can - this means getting the camera physically as close to the subject as you can.
     
  4. Druid of Lûhn

    Druid of Lûhn The Little Lamb.

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    I knew that theory (I was using f5.0 I believe) but had had difficulty getting the right focal length before, not realising that I could zoom a long way for it to work.
    I then had to figure out the right distance so that I could focus on it without it being so far that the shallow depth of field disappeared.

    Thanks Running! Sadly my best one has disappeared and I only realised when uploading.