Have you ever wondered how some photographers create photos with a magical, dreamy effect that make a subject seem to pop out of the background and direct a viewer’s eye to exactly where it should go? That’s what you’ll learn how to in the tutorial below, in barely seven minutes.
Today’s topic is all about an imaging effect known as bokeh—a term used to describe the quality of out-of-focus portions of an image that can add depth and impact to the shot. Used properly, bokeh can transform seemingly ho-hum scenes into something truly special.
Many photographers even research the bokeh characteristics of various lenses, that differ widely from one choice to another, before deciding which lens to purchase. While there are various ways to manipulate background blur during the editing process, today’s episode she explains how to create this magic in the camera.
Eva Polak is a remarkable photographer with a unique style, and a very adept instructor who shares the secrets to her success for making captivating images with unusual aesthetic qualities. She says, “Bokeh is an art form in itself,” and in barely seven minutes explains how to use it to add dimension and impact to a photograph.
Polak’s practical tips cover everything from using the right lens, setting up the camera properly to accentuate the effect, finding the best light for this technique, and the importance of adjusting camera-to-subject distance. She promises that, “you’ll also learn how to control the qualities of bokeh and use it purposefully to enhance the composition of your images.”
The goal here, as with many of Polak’s straightforward lessons, is to capture uncommon images that stand out from the rest, without resorting to image-processing techniques. And that’s a great approach because, as most of us know, heavy-handed editing can result unnatural images that really looked “overcooked.”
One extra benefit of the methods you’ll learn is they’re not limited to any specific genre of photography—meaning that they’re equally beneficial whether you’re shooting portraits, landscapes, wildlife, or just about anything else. We suggest you experiment with Polak’s suggestions before pulling out your wallet to spend big bucks on a “bokeh monster” lens.
There’s a lot more to learn about shooting images with a unique look on Polak’s instructional YouTube channel, so put on your magician’s hat and pay a visit the next time you want to get your creative juices flowing.
On a related note, don’t miss the tutorial we posted from another pro explaining three simple tips for creating an eye-catching photographic style of your own.