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Archive 2012 · Deep Depth of Field.
  
 
Tom K.
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Deep Depth of Field.


An insightful article about depth of field by John Kennerdell. It's not a trendy take on the topic. It's interesting and when I read it I thought that some folks in this forum would enjoy it.

Well worth a read.
http://theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/2012/06/in-defense-of-depth.html



Jun 22, 2012 at 10:12 PM
Ghost
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Deep Depth of Field.


There was an article posted by Tony Hoffer about shooting f/8 that led to a dialogue about how many photographers these days simply shoot wide open just because they can. It became a crutch as what this article also highlighted.

It's a trend right now for uber-thin bokeh.



Jun 22, 2012 at 10:19 PM
Tom K.
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Deep Depth of Field.


Ghost wrote:
There was an article posted by Tony Hoffer about shooting f/8 that led to a dialogue about how many photographers these days simply shoot wide open just because they can. It became a crutch as what this article also highlighted.


I read that thread posted by Tony Hoffer. An interesting disscusion ensued. It came to mind while reading the article I posted.



Jun 22, 2012 at 10:31 PM
joelconner
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Deep Depth of Field.


great article


Jun 22, 2012 at 11:48 PM
Mark_L
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Deep Depth of Field.


Interesting read. Like most things it has it's place, I recently shot some pictures with the couple on a road with some cool houses and probably out of habit shot it at f/3.5 @ 135mm and later realised it would have been far better with the whole scene sharp.

If you look at a lot of fashion magazines you will often see deeper dof. One fashion photographer was asked on his blog why he used the 85mm 1.8 and not the 1.2, his answer was that it stopped down to f/22 and he disliked having any part of the model out of focus.



Jun 23, 2012 at 12:09 AM
MarcAnthony
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Deep Depth of Field.


I shoot at f11 all the time. This isn't groundbreaking.


Jun 23, 2012 at 12:13 AM
Tom K.
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Deep Depth of Field.


MarcAnthony wrote:
I shoot at f11 all the time. This isn't groundbreaking.


Did you read the article? The author didn't mention the topic as being "groundbreaking".



Jun 23, 2012 at 12:44 AM
whtrbt7
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Deep Depth of Field.


Higher f stop and wider DOF is easy. Lower f stop and razor thin DOF is hard. There are different reasons for shooting in a variety of stops.


Jun 23, 2012 at 01:23 AM
Mike Mahoney
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Deep Depth of Field.


Shallow dof is a great tool for event photographers .. things move quickly which often makes background composition difficult (if not impossible), backgrounds are often cluttered and not of significance to the scene, and at the end of the day it's really more about the players than the field. Meaning I like my brides to be in focus and the empty shoe box in the corner of the room to be blurred into oblivion

Deep depth of field qualities are less obtainable during weddings than other genres of photography. But when they are obtainable I think many of us select narrower apertures to capture them.



Jun 23, 2012 at 01:28 AM
joelconner
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Deep Depth of Field.


whtrbt7 wrote:
Higher f stop and wider DOF is easy. Lower f stop and razor thin DOF is hard. There are different reasons for shooting in a variety of stops.



the only thing hard about it is keeping things focused accurately...other than that, I find that shooting wide open is SO much easier because your need for attention to composition and background elements drops dramatically.



Jun 23, 2012 at 01:29 AM
 

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whtrbt7
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Deep Depth of Field.


Thin DOF still requires adequate composition as well as skill in capturing the right depth. Shooting deep DOF requires about the same amount of composition but it's different because you're looking to balance foreground with background and you can't edit anything out until post. A lot of lenses can also be stopped down a lot which is what makes thin DOF more valuable in the eyes of many photographers right now. Wedding photography requires a lot of disciplines just because there are detail shots, portraits, PJ shots, low light shots, etc..... I shoot some shots stopped down a lot and I also shoot thin DOF shots. I just creatively think of what I want to shoot before I shoot it. If I'm shooting portraits, I either do razor thin DOF or I stop it down just enough so DOF is wide enough to capture their ears.


Jun 23, 2012 at 01:43 AM
RobertLynn
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Deep Depth of Field.


Thanks for that link.


Jun 25, 2012 at 02:17 PM
JoeMelzer
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Deep Depth of Field.


Wide open has it's charm, stopped down has, too. I think, most important is the right mix. Last year I saw a complete wedding series from start (which was the ceremony) to finish (reception). During the first 10 or so images i was amazed by the DOF. All-blurry background, nice sharp subjects. Really stunned me. The second 10 images: oh, okay, nice DOF. The third 10 images: mm hm ... And then: oh man, did the photog *ever* stop down? No, he did not. In the end, it bored me.
So, while I am really keen on getting one of those really fast primes, to _be able_ to achieve this look, watching this series tought me to carefully balance different f-stops.



Jun 25, 2012 at 03:02 PM
Prettym1k3
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Deep Depth of Field.


JoeMelzer wrote:
Wide open has it's charm, stopped down has, too. I think, most important is the right mix. Last year I saw a complete wedding series from start (which was the ceremony) to finish (reception). During the first 10 or so images i was amazed by the DOF. All-blurry background, nice sharp subjects. Really stunned me. The second 10 images: oh, okay, nice DOF. The third 10 images: mm hm ... And then: oh man, did the photog *ever* stop down? No, he did not. In the end, it bored me.
So, while I am really keen on getting one of those
...Show more

I guess the question is, why would that photographer need to stop down? Unless you could pick out shots where family was staggered and row 2 and 3 were completely out of focus, why should he stop down? It's his style. And he likes it. It may differentiate him from others in his market, or it may be what his clients love. More importantly, it may be what he loves, and that's key.

There are those of us who stick with what works, and those of us who mix it up. But in the end, it's all about style. We can all groan about how we hate a constant f/1.2, or how we hate a constant f/8, or how we hate selective color, sepia, punchy editing, film emulators, etc. But it really comes down to style. And I see nothing wrong with anyone wants to shoot everything wide open or stopped down, as long as it makes sense. Especially for weddings, when lighting can be tricky, backgrounds can be full of polka-dot looking guests in blue tuxedos and purple dresses, or could be a graffiti'd wall, a busy street, or a beautiful sunset or a candle lit evening.

I guess it's one thing to say that the photographer didn't (which is what you did - so I'm not trying to argue here ), but it's another thing to claim - without talking to the photographer and finding out how they like to shoot or what drives their style/inspires them - that they don't know how to shoot stopped down.



Jun 25, 2012 at 05:03 PM
Tom K.
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Deep Depth of Field.


RobertLynn wrote:
Thanks for that link.


You're welcome.



Jun 25, 2012 at 05:32 PM
JoeMelzer
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Deep Depth of Field.


Prettym1k3 wrote:
I guess it's one thing to say that the photographer didn't (which is what you did - so I'm not trying to argue here ), but it's another thing to claim - without talking to the photographer and finding out how they like to shoot or what drives their style/inspires them - that they don't know how to shoot stopped down.


No, that is not the point. Of course he knows how to do that; I guess someone shooting wide open DOES know how to stop down. But he didn't. Perhaps because he was lazy, perhaps because it's his style - dunno. For whatever reason, my point being that it can be nice for a change to change aperture



Jun 25, 2012 at 06:15 PM
RDKirk
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Deep Depth of Field.


There are those of us who stick with what works, and those of us who mix it up. But in the end, it's all about style. We can all groan about how we hate a constant f/1.2, or how we hate a constant f/8, or how we hate selective color, sepia, punchy editing, film emulators, etc. But it really comes down to style. And I see nothing wrong with anyone wants to shoot everything wide open or stopped down, as long as it makes sense. Especially for weddings, when lighting can be tricky, backgrounds can be full of polka-dot looking guests...Show more

That's not really "style." That's just a stuck aperture setting.

Take a look at the work of Vermeer, a painter who used the camera obscura for much of his work. Sometimes he worked with limited depth of field, sometimes with very deep depth of field, depending on the nature of the subject. Yet, Vermeer's style was always his style regardless of the tool he used. Sometimes his subject was the face of a person, but sometimes the "subject" was actually the entire environment of the person. Take his painting of "The Astronomer," for instance--all of the room details are required in sharp focus, a very different treatment from "Girl with Red Hat."

Let's say you're shooting a wedding reception of one of those ethnicities that have big group celebrations, like carrying the bride in a chair above their heads. That shot calls for a deep depth of field because the subject is actually the entire group, not the eyes of the bride.

But I would say that a photographer who does not see a picture during a wedding that cries out for deep depth of field...is probably either not looking very well or is running from it.



Jun 25, 2012 at 07:41 PM
ricardovaste
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Deep Depth of Field.


What is depth of field ?


Jun 25, 2012 at 07:45 PM
brett maxwell
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Deep Depth of Field.


I'm not anal about sensor cleanliness, so my idea of a deep DOF is usually about f5.6.


Jun 25, 2012 at 08:10 PM
lisy78
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Deep Depth of Field.


whtrbt7 wrote:
Higher f stop and wider DOF is easy. Lower f stop and razor thin DOF is hard. There are different reasons for shooting in a variety of stops.


You can't possibly be serious



Jun 26, 2012 at 03:38 AM
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