From My Photo Lab: Aperture Priority Mode + the Bokeh EffectFriday, December 30, 2011
(These are quick, simple tips that I'm giving you to better understand your camera's features and for fun photography tricks. There are MANY wonderful tutorials out there that you can also use as reference.)
All DSRL cameras have this icon, which stands for "Aperture Priority Mode". In simple words, it's the camera's setting that controls the area over which light can pass through your camera lens.
It's represented/specified in terms of f-stop value, in which:
- the lower the f-stop value (eg. f/1.0, f/1.4), the wider the aperture will be; and
- the higher the f-stop value (eg. f/4.0, f/5.6), the smaller the aperture will be.
And why do you have to know all this?
Because if you do, then you'll know how to set your camera to make this Bokeh effect (Depth of Field), just like the pics in this post ;-)
See how blurry the background is? It is because I set the Aperture Mode (Av) in the lowest f-stop value.
By turning the wheel in your camera, you can increase or decrease the f-stop value and, furthermore, make your background look real blurry (or less blurry). Cool ha?
Now, there are other things that you must take into consideration...
- The Depth of Field (DoF) or Bokeh effect is the range of distance that appears sharp. A reasonable distance is 1' of distance from your subject.
- The longer focal lengths appear to have a shallower DoF, because they enlarge the background relative to the foreground.
- The lower the f-stop value, the blurry your background will be. This setting is also used for low light situations.
- The higher the f-stop value, the softer or less blurry your background will be. This setting is also used for bright light situations.
- The framing and/or the Rule of Thirds will also do the trick... but that I'll explain in another post ;-)
- Take in mind the camera's ISO, as it plays an important role too when using the Av Mode ;-)
For iPhone 4 Users:
- The Av in an iPhone 4 is set to f/2.8, which is a standard one for a DoF effect. Simply frame your pic and then tap the small square that appears in the iPhone's screen window to focus on the subject and the camera will do the rest ;-)
- There's this cool free application called Big Lens, which helps you give your iPhone's pics a much better detailed DoF, among with other cool features. And did I mention that it's free? :-D