Bleed the bokeh.
Bokeh on smartphones has become a real hit. Few believed in this technology, believing that the fate of 3D television awaits it – it will quickly disappear and disappear.
Now it is an integral part of any modern photographer, which helps to make fantastic portraits.
However, even the top models cannot boast one hundred percent bokeh. We have prepared a number of tips to help you achieve a great result with blurring the background.
Table of Contents
Keep your distance
Most phone manufacturers recommend keeping a distance of 1.5 meters from the subject. Few people can work at close distances, since it will not be possible to use two cameras (although there are phones that work with one camera module).
Some smartphones will not be able to blur the background if the subject is too close. It is best to know in advance at what distance the best shots are obtained and build on it when using the camera.
The iPhone X and XS can blur the background with the front camera.
Distance between foreground and background
The most important thing is to make sure that there is a big gap between the foreground and the background. This will simplify image processing software.
Problems in blurring algorithms often arise when the software cannot determine where the foreground and where is the background. When shooting scenes where there is a clear distinction between them, you will most likely get a good result close to what wide-angle lenses can produce.
If possible, try to achieve a distance of 2 meters between the subject and the surroundings.
Do not complicate the contours
Bokeh mode has evolved significantly since the launch of technology on smartphones in 2014. However, complex contours are still an issue for cameras on most phones.
Avoid mixing small details of the background with the foreground. Messy hair, beard and other complex textures may not fit into the processing algorithm and may look unnatural in the end result.
Photo taken on the iPhone XS.
Avoid reflective and translucent objects.
Transparent, translucent, and reflective objects can also affect bokeh. A classic example is if someone wears glasses and looks the other way.
The space behind the glasses will also be blurry when shooting with a large sensor with a wide-angle lens. The smartphone’s camera can’t do this. Although the photo will still look good in the finale, you can immediately see by the outline of the glasses that it was not shot on an optical lens.
Therefore, you should double-check the pictures immediately after shooting.
Change the “aperture” before or after shooting
Today, many modern smartphones support the function of supposedly variable aperture. In a regular camera. As the diaphragm changes, the hole through which the light passes becomes larger or smaller.
Huawei smartphones can change aperture values from f / 0.95 to f / 16, the latter has no blur. Some of Samsung phones have a variable physical aperture along with a virtual one.
Background blur can be changed both during shooting and after in the gallery.
Samsung Galaxy S9 Camera Has Variable Physical Aperture
You still need focus
After shooting, in addition to the aperture, you can also change the focus point. However, do not rely heavily on this feature.
When the phone re-blurs the image after shooting, it simply applies a very smart software filter to the image with the appropriate depth map. In fact, this is the same photograph.
This means that you need to be careful when choosing a focus point during shooting, especially if the subject is relatively close. Bokeh mode may use additional images, but it does not combine all the pictures taken.
If the background has a slight blurry effect due to the natural depth of field of the camera lens, then it cannot be made sharp. However, there is a whole area of photography for this. Plenoptic cameras like Lytro are capable of doing the above.
Search for the right light sources
You might think that bokeh mode is just an ordinary filter, but actually the blurring process is much more complicated. Such modes also emulate the special effects inherent in wide-angle lenses.
If you shoot with narrowly directed light sources in the background, then in the end we get beautiful blurry lights in the background. They will be visible as clear circles of light, and not some blurry drops.
When shooting with such a setting of light, you can get pictures that will be difficult to distinguish from those that are made on a DSLR.
If the smartphone does not support bokeh, then shoot the subject as close as possible
All this time we talked about phones with bokeh modes. But what to do, it is not?
You can blur the background using the natural depth of field of the camera lens. Since we are dealing with a phone that has a very small lens and a small sensor, blurring will be noticeable if you get as close as possible to the subject.
It is great for macro-style shots, but not very suitable for portraits, as blur fades when removed.
If you need more, then try emulating the blur effect with filters. The Google app – Snapseed has circular and linear blur filters that can blur the background. Although the result will be far from bokeh, however, this is a good way to give a photo of creativity.