Basic Photography: Depth of Field

Are you just getting started with photography?  We are here to help.   Here we will walk you through the basics to help get you started. The next basic photography term we will discuss is depth of field. Remember when we discussed aperture? If you are not sure what that is, go over and read that real quick, we will wait for you here. It is important to know what aperture is before we can talk about depth of field.


In the most basic sense DOF is the amount of the image that is in focus at a certain distance. If you are shooting a high aperture number like F22, your DOF will be very far.  This means that most things behind your subject will be in focus and have lots of detail.  That is why if you are taking a beautiful

mountain range picture you will want to shoot at a higher aperture such as F22 to make sure it is all in focus even though it is very far away.


Depth of field basically means how far you can see behind your subject.  When a lens is opened up (F1.8) , its focal plane, or area of focus is much smaller.  Only parts of the picture will be in focus, while everything else at a different distance is out of focus.  the way that the area looks that is out of focus is called bokeh.  Bokeh is the blurry area around your subject.  Check out the picture of this young lady in the middle of a snow storm.


Look at that blurry background.


Notice how you can see the background, but it is all blurred out?  That is bokeh.  That is actually a busy street behind her.  Can’t even tell, can you?  This is a perfect situation for a shallow depth of field.  All you need is a wide aperture and a little distance between your main subject and the background and viola!

What is your biggest photography problem?  Please leave it in the comments below. Need more help or more confidence?  Why don’t you go over here and download our free eBook?  We go over some the basic introductory things you will need to know to shoot DIY senior pictures.  It is free!  What have you got to lose?

Thanks for being a part of DIY Senior Pictures.  Need more immediate help?  Need a step by step process?  Check out our latest Kindle books.  Why not check out our bonus video section too?  Leave a comment and let's discuss your photo concerns.  Talk to you soon.

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