View single post by Eric
 Posted: Sat Feb 20th, 2021 19:49

Joined: Thu Apr 19th, 2012
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 3606
For me the problem with just blurring the background is twofold ....

A constant degree of blur assumes everything in the background is the same distance behind the a studio portrait background. 
That’s fine if that’s what you are trying to achieve....a portrait of a critter. I just don’t find flying birds... ‘studio subjects’.
In a natural setting, a portrait benefits from sharing some of the surroundings in the composition, ideally then with a more natural progressive zone of sharpness/defocus behind. I like to see some habitat with the creature. No it’s not an excuse for not getting close enough. 😂  

The other issue is, just blurring the background without reframing unbalances the image. There is too much blurred background which distracts from the subject. In your hummingbird moth image there is far too much out of focus to the left. (I realise it’s been done just to make a point). It needs tighter cropping ...which then turns it back into a tight studio portrait. 

Click here to comment on this image.

That still works ok in this case because you have the plant as part of the composition. With flying birds there is unlikely to have anything to balance the composition.

Hope that makes sense?

Incidentally, somewhere on my desktop I have a PS Action that sequentially layers focus progressively back in stages giving increasing levels of defocus away from a subject to give quite a natural depth of field effect. I created it after messing up a shoot with the wrong aperture. 😂

Last edited on Sat Feb 20th, 2021 19:59 by Eric