Canon s90 - depth of field?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Lauren47, Jul 22, 2010.

  1. Lauren47

    Lauren47 TPF Noob!

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    I recently got the s90 and love it. One of the things I was hoping it could do (but I have not figured it out yet) is allow me to take portraits with a shallow depth of field. I am not a "real" photographer so I am not sure how to set up the camera to do this. The Canon website touts the s90's f2.8 to enable this, but what should the other settings be, will I have to use a tripod to reduce shake, etc.? (I do realize it will never be the same as using a DSLR for the same effect!)

    Thanks for any help!
     
  2. OrionsByte

    OrionsByte No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    A tripod won't change your DOF obviously, but it may be helpful depending on how much light is available.

    To get a shallow DOF, set your aperture as wide as possible, maximize the distance between your subject and the background, and minimize the distance between your subject and the camera. Increasing your focal length (by zooming in) will also decrease your DOF, but this will cause your aperture to decrease as well - check your camera manual to see what the maximum aperture is at full zoom.

    It will take some practice to get a feel for what to expect, but I know for me the most important thing to learn was that the farther away from the camera the subject is, the deeper the DOF. So you may find yourself getting more up close and personal with your subjects than you were expecting to.
     
  3. white

    white TPF Noob!

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    Take your finger and put it in front of your eye. Focus on the grooves in your fingerprint. Notice the blur in the background. Now put your finger close to another object and do the same thing.

    This is how depth of field works.
     
  4. Steve01

    Steve01 TPF Noob!

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    Actually it's f2.0 at wide angle and f4.9 at full telephoto.
    "OrionsByte" covered the concept pretty well and "White" explained what you should look for in the camera's display.

    You said you don't have much experience so you might want to try out the cameras portrait mode, Page 56 of the manual ( I have this camera too).

    That mode will probably set up the camera to get you the best results but do what "OrionsByte" said and put some distance between the subject and the background.
    This camera also has facial recognition so that should help you too.
     

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