Saturday, November 27, 2010

Depth of Field

Trying to take shots with a good deep depth of field for that 3 dimensional look is not as easy as you might think.

Depending upon light at the time getting a shot with low f ratios can make it hard to do. The risk of blowing out the background due to over exposure is always present. The lower the f ratio the smoother the background will look while the subject matter should go from out of focus, to in focus , then out of focus again to create that 3d look we are after.

The first shot is taken using the Fiji HS10 in "P" mode. Same settings as linked here in the favorites section. The rest are all shot in Manual mode to allow more flexibility than using a Program mode setting. This is one area where the HS10 excels if you are prepared to exercise a little patience.
Focal length was 126mm with aperture at f5.6 and 1/750th of a second exposure time.The long focal length combine with a fast aperture brings the subject into focus while blurring the background. This is one method.

Another method is to use a shorter focal length and move closer to the subject. Focal length is 46.6 mm at f 5 and 1/640th sec. Again foreground is out of focus as is the wall in the background allowing focus to fall through the mid area.

Yet another method is to use a wide angle setting, in this case 12.3mm at f4 and 1/640sec exp. This allows more detail in the foreground and background but maintains the focus just through the center area.

The next method is to use the camera in standard macro mode with a short focal length. In this photo the image is shot at f4.5 at 28mm focal length and 1/800sec.The exposure time is not that important, however both the focal length and distance to target are. Coupled with a fast f ratio and the ability to zoom in macro mode, using the HS10, the result can be very good at giving that down the barrel look, where the difference between in focus and out of focus in the image is very sharply defined in a small area.

Given good shooting conditions the Fuji HS10 can return a very good image, and is capable of doing so in a number of ways depending on how the finished image should look.


  1. Ralph, Hi

    Really nice series and also good tips. Love that last image.


  2. hi good info but do you use photoshop or other images to help your photo's

  3. sorry i have a hs10 and i'm just learning it's difficult to understand certain settings so i'v taken your advice and i use the (p) setting getting some good results thank's chris

  4. Good luck with your HS10. It takes a good photo but is does take a bit to get used to it.

  5. I use Photoshop as well as Lightroom 3 and I use Photoscape a lot.
    In fact I use Photoscape for about 85% of the processing work.
    Just follow the Photoscape Tutorial link at the top of the page for a better understanding of how it works.

  6. Thank you Ralph for your prompt reply

  7. An excellent post and one which I will study with my own examples and my new HS20.

    George in Kildeer, IL