Exploring Photography… Bokeh

In photography, bokeh is a blur. Not just a blur, but one that adds a pleasing aesthetic quality to the photograph. Bokeh occurs in parts of the scene that lie outside the depth of field. Photographers utilizing bokeh deliberately use a shallow depth of field to create images with prominent out-of-focus regions.

Bokeh is often most visible around small background highlights (i.e. reflections and light sources). However, bokeh is not limited to highlights; blur occurs in all out-of-focus regions of the image.

The shape of the aperture can have an influence on the shape of bokeh. Conventional lenses usually crate a blurred polygonal shape. Some aperture blades are curved to form an approximate circle instead. And recently photographers have began to creat simple masks of card (i.e. heats, stars, etc) and placing it over the lens to create the desired bokeh. Bokeh can also be emulated with photo editing software.

Fine art photographs should be preserved by mounting on acid-free backing, and framed behind UV glass. Photographs should be kept out of direct sunlight to prevent damage to the image.

Below are some wonderful bokeh photographs. As with all of my featured art/artists these are pieces I would purchase for myself or as a gift.

  • Salmon and Aqua by Lori of Fresh Snapped Photos (Lori will post it on Etsy if you’re interested in purchasing it)

  • Oxygen by Geisha Photography

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