If there are students who have taken our “Beginner Photography Training Course” (see this for details), one of them is how to use the equipment to take beautiful photos. But how can students who have not attended a class learn? We have written this article to help you can understand the use of “depth of field” within 5 minutes, and make better use of your equipment to take beautiful photos!

 

1, Aperture Size Affects the Depth of Field

Remember the following theories:

Large Aperture = Small Number = Blurred Background/Depth of Field= Shot of Portrait (just for memory example)
Small Aperture=Large Number=Clear Background/Depth of Field= Landscape Shot

Examples of large apertures are f/1.4, f/1.8, and f/2.8;
examples of small apertures are f/8, f/11, and f/32

Large apertures can reduce the depth of field. (Photo by {link: https: //www.flickr.com/photos/tim_peters/3834773272} Tim Peters {/ link})

Large apertures can reduce the depth of field.
Photo by Tim Peters

2, The Focal Length Affects the Depth of Field

At the same aperture: the longer the focal length, the shallower the depth of field, so you can use 85-200mm for portraits.

3, Background distance Affects Depth of Field

The further the background is from the subject, the shallower the depth of field.

4, Can I shoot in a Shallow Depth of Field with Full Auto Mode?

Although the automatic mode cannot adjust the aperture, you can try:

  1. Turn on Macro Mode
  2. Shoot the camera as close to the subject as possible
  3. Find an angle so that the background is further away from the subject.

Such photos should also have a shallow depth of field effect!

Use the camera's macro mode and add a close depth of field to achieve a shallow depth of field effect.

Use the camera’s macro mode and add a close depth of field to achieve a shallow depth of field effect.

5, Is the Depth of Field Range Before and After the Focus Point the Same?

Usually the depth of field range is 1/3 in front of the focus point and 2/3 behind the focus point, but as the focal length is longer, the front-to-back range gets closer and closer.

6, When Should I Use a Shallow Depth of Field?

Although the effect of shallow depth of field is very beautiful, it is not used casually. The following situations can be used:

  • Want to focus on the subject (portrait)
  • When the background is too cluttered (taking pictures on the street)
  • When you want to shoot a dream effect
  • Creative photography (making bokeh patterns)
Use shallow depth of field to shoot dreamy effects.

Use a shallow depth of field to shoot dreamy effects.

7, When do I need to use a Deep Depth of Field?

When your aperture is small, the depth of field will become deeper. We want the entire photo to be clear, we will use depth of field, which is often used for landscape photography or street photography.

The depth of field is used when shooting landscapes to make all photos clear.

The depth of field is used when shooting landscapes to make all photos clear.

Postscript

Depth of field control is one of the most important skills in photography. It is recommended that you be proficient! If you are interested, you can also read the following teaching articles:

  • Novice must learn! 3 tips for shooting “Shallow Depth of Field”
  • The relationship between aperture and depth of field
  • Make good use of the focus to create a composition with a shallow depth of field!
  • 30 Fascinating Shallow Depth of Field Photos

 

Author: Alex Tam