In November I went to an LROS indoor meeting where I’d booked Paul Hobson to do a talk on wildlife photography – or better techniques for wildlife photography. As always, I’m always looking to learn and expand my photographic capabilities and one subject Paul kept coming back to was Bokeh. Bokeh intrigued me and the ideas stayed with me… something to experiment with I thought.
For those not in the know Bokeh can be defined as (this is from Wikipedia) – In photography, bokeh is the blur, or the aesthetic quality of the blur, in out-of-focus areas of an image, or “the way the lens…” Bokeh is those out-of-focus circles or shapes of light you see… I used to be annoyed by them but now I find them arty.
So how do I create Bokeh? Well I did a google search and found out how easy it is… but how difficult to do well. Basically you need a large aperture setting (small f number), a subject (not always necessary) and some pin-point light sources that are out-of-focus – sunlight reflected off water maybe? Having missed trying it out with the Christmas lights I was thinking my way round the problem. I also really wanted to do Bokeh in the wild. Then, as I was browsing some of my images I started to see Bokeh. At first it was small – just a few bits of reflected light from the water on this Four-spotted Chaser image from Woodwalton Fen.
Hmmm, I got to thinking about all those ‘annoying’ reflections in my dragonfly shots… ok, check a few and boom! This baby leapt out at me. I’d already got my Bokeh on this shot of a White-faced Darter from a couple of years ago at Chartley Moss. Bingo!
Ok, so it’s not going to set the world of photography alight but it’s a start and now I’m looking for more opportunities. Roll on summer.