Bokeh Photography

Written by Backdrop Express Photography Team on . Posted in Photography Tips

city scape bokeh

One of the most interesting styles of photography is Bokeh. In Japanese, Bokeh means blur, but there is definitely an art involved in arranging the aperture just right and creating a blur that enhances the overall look of the photo. These photos can be gorgeous when done right, or when chromatic aberrations of lens aperture shapes. The aperture number and/or the shape of the blade determines how the Bokeh will ultimately look. If an eight blade diaphragm is used, a polygonal Bokeh will be the result.

One thing Bokeh photographers pay very close attention to is the spot in which a camera has the best focus. This is commonly called the COC, or circle of confusion. By paying attention to the COC, a photographer can easily measure an image’s depth of field.

bokeh photographyPhoto Courtesy of Gege Gatt

Another important consideration when setting up Bokeh photography shots is how to set up the photography background. You may prefer a specific colored photo backdrop. Whatever is chosen, properly back lighting the backdrop is important for creating a great Bokeh. An experienced Bokeh photographer will identify highlights within a scene, and blend them with shadows for a great effect. One way to do this is to keep the light source equidistant between the background and the subject.

bokeh photographyPhoto Courtesy of De Vetpan Studios

While many Bokeh are spherical or round in shape, it is not a requirement. Technically, any blurred out background qualifies as a Bokeh and the best Bokehs simply use a larger aperture. Minolta and Sony are two recommended brands for those photographers that wish to specialize in Bokeh photography. These brands produce a lens with a trans-focus and apodization filter that are hard to find in other cameras.

Christmas Light Bokeh Backdrop from Backdrop Express
Christmas Light Bokeh Backdrop from Backdrop Express

Some photographers experiment by making their own Bokeh. To do this, cut a simple shape out from a card and place it in front of the lens. Extension tubes in macro photograph can also be useful. The result won’t always be attractive since it is hard to get the spherical aberration and chromatic aberration right. Bokeh backdrops are also available for those who’d prefer to shoot on a ready-made bokeh effect!

bokeh photographyPhoto Courtesy of Ryan Anger

For those wanting to experiment in interesting and creative photography, Bokeh is the perfect route.

-Backdrop Express Photography Team

Interested in Bokeh Photograpahy? Check out our new, fun Bokeh styled backdrops!

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