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Topic: photographing items  (Read 728 times)
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cariadai
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« on: January 08, 2005 05:53:55 AM »

I'm hoping there are some good photographers on here, who can help me with something! I use a digital camera, which has autofocus, and when I take a photo, the whole shot is in equal focus. How can I take a shot where the item in the foreground is in focus, and the rest of the photo is out of focus? I think it looks so stylish when items are photographed in this way, but I just don't know how you do it. Is it possible with a digital camera, or perhaps just some of them? Thanks so much to anyone who can help. I am building my new website now, and I just want to take my photos up a notch.

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Trudie
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« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2005 08:29:35 AM »

It depends on the quality of your camera, to be honest.  I don't have a digitial, but I have a pro film camera that has a "portrait" setting, where it does exactly what you're talking about.

If you don't have a portrait, or similar, setting on your camera, you can make a makeshift drop cloth with a plain piece of fabric, or even a plain shirt.  Black may work best, depending on what you're selling, but blue looks very professional as well.

Hope this helps, and give us the link when you're done your site!
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« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2005 09:02:13 AM »

well, the way you take a picture w/ the subject in focus and the background out of focus is by, on a manual SLR camera, you use a large aperture, 3.5, 4, or 5. it has a short depth of field. they make digital SLR cameras, but for the body plus lens, they're over 1000 bucks. i don't know if it would be possible on a regular point and shoot digital camera. photoshop perhaps.
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Linds3485
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2005 11:16:01 AM »

You don't need a digital SLR to be able to adjust the settings manually. I have a point-and-shoot Canon that I actually used for a photography class - and was able to do all the settings manually. Check the manual of your camera and see if it has a manual mode. Most cameras also have an aperture and shutter priority mode- and then you only have to manually choose one of the settings - the camera adjusts the other to the lighting conditions. If you have an aperture priority mode - set the aperture to the largest possible opening (ie - the smallest possible number) to get the lowest possible depth of field (and have items in the background blurry). Get as close to what your photographing as possible, and also move the item farther away from the background - that should make the background more out of focus. Hope that made sense!
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« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2005 11:26:02 AM »

see if there's an option on your camera that looks like a tulip or a flower. that should work. and make sure not to take the picture too close to the item because it will definitely not be able to focus on it. maybe 2-3 feet away and then crop out the extra space in the photo later.
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mmmfruit
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2005 10:22:45 PM »

depends on your camera.

what most people, and i myself do with my digital (canon powershot s400), is use the macro feature -- it's that one that looks like a tulip, like ctp said above. Smiley

& my friend who has a sony digital said he had an option that let him choose a section to focus on, and made everything blurry except for that section. i can't remember what it was called, though.
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cariadai
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« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2005 08:54:50 AM »

Thank you so much everyone for your advice. I checked my camera and I do have the tulip (macro) feature, so I'm going to give it a try tomorrow when its daylight. Thanks again!

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Trudie
« Last Edit: December 18, 2006 11:24:43 AM by jungrrl » THIS ROCKS   Logged

cariadai
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« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2005 03:46:41 AM »

Humph. It didnt work. No matter what distance I was, everything was blurred, foreground and background. I think my camera isnt quite good enough for this kind of work (its pretty old). I'll have to save up for a new one....

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Trudie
« Last Edit: December 18, 2006 11:24:59 AM by jungrrl » THIS ROCKS   Logged

mmmfruit
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2005 09:38:37 PM »

with my canon, and i know with my dad's camera too (he has a digital slr, nikon brand).. when you use the macro setting, there are two things you need to remember:

1) you can not use your zoom feature on your camera. if you were zoomed in, zoom allll the way out. the reason for having a macro setting is to allow you to actually get up close to the object and capture details, rather than zooming in on something.
2) you need to get up close to the object. how close, or rather how far, really depends on your camera model & brand. my camera -- canon powershot s400 -- allows me to be a little less than 2 cm. close to an object. usually if i'm even maybe 2-5 inches away, i can use the macro setting, but it will choose to focus on whatever it wants to. vary your distance to be able to have sharpness & the blurring in the distance.
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