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Monday, September 15, 2014

Photo Tip Monday: Selective Focus

Summarizing today's post: Photo tips, selective focus and what is means, & paying attention to the world around you.

shot at 65mm, ISO 200, f/5.6, 1/400th of a sec, in full sun
Yesterday was a wonderful day outdoors, I hope you got to enjoy it. Especially towards the end of the day when the solid cloud cover broke up into big puffs of clouds. The temperature was in the low 70s, and even in the sun it felt nice and cool because of the breeze. You couldn't ask for better!

I headed out for a quick walk with camera in hand...I had to get out and enjoy the weather. I quickly saw an opportunity for a photo tip and wanted to share.

Selective focus is the order of the day. But what is that?

Selective focus is where you set the aperture on your camera to fairly wide setting of say...f/8 or wider (lower f/stop number), and then purposely focus on one particular area in your frame to draw emphasis to it. The wider the aperture, the more shallow the depth of field will be, and the more you will "fuzz" or "blur" the out-of-focus areas. [For more on aperture, see my post here.]

shot at 65mm, ISO 200, f/5.6, 1/400th of a sec, in full sun
Look at my two photographs. You can see that in the first one (top of page) I have my focus set to the foreground, whereas in this one I have the attention on the background a lot more. The foreground is now blurred and the pretty begonias are in crystal clear focus.

You can achieve this by either manually focusing, or using your "focus lock" button on the back of your camera if you have one. Most DSLR cameras have this feature, and some high end point-and-shoots do as well. Simply bring your focus on your selected area, hold down your focus lock button, then you can pan your camera wherever you like before snapping the picture.

Neither photo is right or wrong, it simply gives the viewer different focal point. You are controlling what you want to draw emphasis to in your frame.

Very neat. This will give your photos a nice little professional touch.

Go play and have a great Monday. Pay attention to the beautiful world around you today. A funny thing happens when you have your camera with you...things "pop out" to you that ordinarily wouldn't. Pretty cool how that works :)

Thanks for reading!


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