Pin sharp or artistic blur?

Sometimes when I go out at night to photograph my usual haunts I try to mix it up a little.

I had that opportunity just recently. I was running a Sydney by night photo tour and decided at one location that my images would be better off abstract than the crisp, clean, totally focused image I usually go for.

This is how I did it;

  • I still used a tripod, though for added effect you could do away with the tripod. It all depends on the effect you are looking for
  • If using a tripod turn off image stabilisation
  • Add the shutter release cable if you have one, if not, remember to set the self timer before taking the shot
  • Choose a point that would normally be identifiable if it was in focus. This will help (but not prevent) people from asking you “what is this?”
  • Compose your shot as usual by working out what you want to have in the frame
  • Turn off auto focus, turning it to manual
  • Decide on the amount of “lens blur” you want to introduce by rotating your focus ring until you have achieved the desired effect
  • I found a shorter focal length will produce a better effect
  • Lastly, I ramped up the colour saturation on my camera “landscape” setting before snapping away

This was the end result

Sydney by night

Feel free to contact me should you have any questions or want to share your artistic images…

Or if you just really like the mood of this shot let me know, I appreciate it.


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