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The Power of Focus!

This post is about the power of focus… in two different ways.

First, I could not focus today, it is like my brain is set on slow and it can’t decide what to do.  I kept going back and forth about what to post for you today.  But when I finally decided what to focus on… then wham-bam –  I’m writing this post not more than 30minutes after I took these photos!

Second… everybody and their mom has a DSLR these days… which is awesome!  They are way more accessible in price, and can take really great photos.  BUT… most people I know who do not take photos with their DSLR’s on a daily basis do not take their cameras off of auto.  So I just want to point out one of the things you could play with if you wanted to venture out of that comfort zone.

Beyond that…  Let me preface this post by saying:  THIS IS NOT A TECHNICAL POST.  Yes, this post is about depth of field.  However, I’m not going to explain the ins and outs of how DSLR cameras work, because there are so many online tutorials you can easily find that explain this in depth.  (pun intended)

All I wanted to do was show you what a difference changing your depth of field can do to a photo.

For example, the above photo was taken from the same position I just changed my f-stop from f/1.4 to f/22.  (Again, want more info on f-stop, aka the setting on your camera that changes the depth of field?  …google it).  Notice how the background fades away and blurs and it brings the focus onto my notecard?  I LOVE this effect.  It is my favorite part of owning a fancy camera.

Here is another example with a bigger scene.  Top left is f/1.4, bottom right is f/11 with a couple stops in between.  Even though the flower isn’t in a great spot to be the attention of the photo… in the top left your eye is drawn to it because the rest of the photo is blurred out.  Where as in the bottom right photo, the rest of the photo is in focus too, making the flower not the center of attention… can you spot the house in the background now?  And isn’t your eye drawn to how scraggly those bushes are?

Last example, same idea.  Your background can go from a pretty mottled nature texture (note: BACKGROUND), to not really knowing which is the background because you can see just as clearly every stick and leaf.

Now don’t get me wrong, having a bigger depth of field can have it’s place, sometimes you want everything in focus.  But I think it is super handy to know about depth of field because of what YOU the photographer want your viewers (or facebook friends) to focus on!  (If you were in a crowded park wouldn’t it be nice to have your friends be the focus and not every body else who might be behind them?)

And my best advice… after you google it and figure how to change your camera settings… GO TAKE PHOTOS.  You can read and read and read about how to change your camera settings, but that isn’t going to do you any good if you don’t go try it.

Plus… taking photos in real life is WAY more fun that sitting at the computer all day.  Take it from me!


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