Nikon D700 50mm f1.4
Have you ever wondered how to get that creamy out of focus background? me too! Although I have little by little learned to shoot wide open, and by wide open I mean from f2 up to f1.4! It wasn’t until recently that I saw a mini video by Jasmine Star (LOVE her instructional videos!) on shooting with a wide aperture that I somehow wanted to try it… AGAIN. Before, I would try shooting wide open, and for some reason thought that I had to be up really close to my subject, which at times gave me the desired effect but many times I just ended up with blurry images. Well, what finally clicked in my mind was when I heard and REALLY understood what it means to have the person or couple on the “same focal plane” as well as being further away from the subject.
I have to say, It’s terribly frustrating to read and not be able to understand the technical parts of photography, but when you finally “get it” it’s such revelation! And yet there is SO much more to learn!
So, don’t give up just yet if you want to be able to achieve a certain look to your images. If shooting with a wide aperture is what calls your attention, keep practicing! No doubt that learning in stages is the best thing. Try one thing at a time, learn it well and then move on to something else. Wanting to learn and master everything at once or too soon can be pretty overwhelming, so be patient. Practice MAKES perfect! 🙂
And although I am NOT an expert on the matter, here are a few tips that have helped ME get much better results when shooting with a wide aperture. Hope it helps you too!
- Keep person or couple on same focal plane
- Focus on the eye closest to you. If one of the eyes is slightly at an angle you might get one eye in focus and the other one not so much in focus.
- Keep a distance between you and the subject.
- Keep in mind that the slightest change in distance or movement can throw off your focus.
- Try the Back Button feature on your DSLR Melissa Jill explains this very well. This feature helped me improve TONS when it comes to achieving image sharpness 🙂