Posts tagged “f1.8

Two of My Boys: Bokeh Panorama

http://www.flickr.com/photos/michaeltuuk/6772922676/in/photostream/lightbox/

Two of My Boys: Bokeh Panorama 50mm, f/1.4, 1/640s, ISO 100,14 frames...sort of

[Update: Here’s another try at it]

This evening I photographed my youngest boys in the backyard with the goal of trying out something called the Brenizer Method, or bokeh panorama.  I first heard of it in a post by Brandon Brasseaux. The goal of the Brenizer Method is to create an image with extremely shallow depth of field.  If I were to take the shot above using a single frame I would either (1) use a very wide-angle lens or (2) use a “normal” lens and stand far back from the scene.  In either case it would be difficult to get much bokeh in the image.  I’ll let you consult a depth-of-field calculator for the exact details but suffice it to say that the wide-angle lens — even at an aperture of f/1.8 — doesn’t result in much bokeh when focused at any reasonable distance.  A lens like I was using in this shot — a 50mm f/1.4 — would require such a long focus distance (i.e. I’d have to stand so far back) that the depth of field would large enough to eliminate a lot of bokeh.  The Brenizer Method uses multiple frames to form the image — using a much shorter focus distance resulting in much shallower depth of field than if you shot one frame standing further from the subject.

The process goes as follows: Instead of standing far away, stand close (I roughly filled the frame with the two boys).  I used an aperture of f/1.4 to get the shallowest depth of field and set a shutter speed in manual mode to keep the exposure consistent in all the frames (I also set the camera to daylight white balance).  I prefocused on the boys and switched the lens to manual focus.  The first frame I took was the one with the boys in it (took many tries to get something decent).  I then let them run off and proceeded to shoot overlapping frames (with the camera in the same location) of the rest of the scene you see above.  I used 14 straight-out-of-the-camera frames to stitch the panorama in Photoshop but in the end I cropped the image quite a bit. It took all of two minutes to shoot the frames, even with the boys’ goofing off.  Since my goal was to try out the method itself, I didn’t stress about background, lens flare, etc.

After stitching I warmed the image a bit, added vignette, tweaked the exposure/clarity on the boys, and removed some of the color fringing on the branches so it wasn’t *so* prominent.  Pretty simple stuff.  I want to try more of these but next time I’ll find a prettier background.  I believe I’ve given enough info for one to start playing with it but if not, an internet search will turn up a lot more information in a hurry.

Here’s a link to posts by the man behind it all: http://www.ryanbrenizer.com/category/brenizer-method/

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