Three articles about bokeh: out of focus rendering in photography

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by roentarre, May 24, 2009.

  1. roentarre

    roentarre TPF Noob!

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    This is a set of 3 articles stating the nature of bokeh and the use of bokeh in photography terms...

    Part I What is bokeh?

    What is bokeh?

    Part II Types of bokeh

    Types of bokeh

    Part III Standard of bokeh and how is it derived?

    Standard of bokeh

    I hope you enjoy the articles in deed

    Regards

    James
     
  2. Samanax

    Samanax TPF Noob!

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    The second and third links go to the same web page.
     
  3. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Yes, and you'll find links to parts 2 and 3 at the bottom of that web page.
     
  4. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    It doesn't really have anything at all to do with the skill of the photographer - it is entirely based on lens selection. This type of bokeh is what you get when using mirror reflex lenses.


    You seem to imply that getting bokeh in your photos is a 'skill' that can be learned, and that you can even learn to have a specific type of bokeh.

    It has more to do with the lens than anything else. Shooting with a large aperture will give you bokeh every time, assuming that there's something in the background to be out of focus.

    The quality of the bokeh is a product of the lens design. There is no 'technique' that you can learn. The more aperture blades a lens has, the smoother the bokeh will be (if you had a lens with only 3 aperture blades, the bokeh would be triangular). Also, the blades on some lenses have straight edges, while others are curved - that halps to smooth it out too.

    Mirrored reflex lenses will give you that ring shaped bokeh which most people find to be ugly.

    EDIT
    You can also make the bokeh any shape you want by making an aperture disc that you could tape to the front of your lens.
    For example, you could take a piece of black posterboard, cut a heart shape from the center of it, tape that to your lens - now you will have heart shaped bokeh.
    You could do the same for any other shape too.
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2009
  5. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Fixed. Remember folks "bokeh" is out of focus light sources.
     
  6. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Ah, yes - sorry about that. ;)


    ...Although - *almost* everything reflects at least some light, so I think the term could still be used to describe the general out-of-focus background area.
     
  7. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    As with many words this one appears to have gone through a bit of a change in meaning as it enters common parlance - most people consider the bokeh to be the general out of focus areas in the background and most explinations I come across or have been told also fit this description.
    And I guess OIIIIIO is right - provided the background is not black some light is being reflected and thus the elements in the background become a lightsource ;)

    Also the last page of the article reads a bit like a Lecia ad/promo. If your going that line then you need to prove it to people not just say it - give people good examples of other brand bokeh and then compare to examples from lecia lenses. Otherwise it just comes off as rather elitist.
    I also fully agree with OIIIIIO point on the nisen bokeh
     
  8. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Catadioptric mirror lens are not the only source of ring shaped bokeh.

    Water droplets will give the same effect as will any small round reflective objects providing specular highlights in the background.
     
  9. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    hmm I have had waterdrops and wet things in my macro work get close to the doghnut shape, but its never as pronounced as it is from the mirror lens example shots that I have seen
     

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