Video: Christmas bokeh in 60 seconds

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You’ve all seen the photos of the beautiful out of focus highlights behind some object of interest. Now you too can participate in this irresistable photographic cliché! It’s all just a simple matter of position and focus.

To achieve the effect in this video, the only thing I changed was to move the model away from the background (closer to the camera) and refocus.

For more in-depth information about depth of field and how you can control it and use its awesome power to triumph over evil, check out these articles from the Photodoto archives:

Monday grab bag

If you’re looking for something requiring a little less commitment…

Photography Books For Christmas or For You

If you still  haven’t knocked out all the Christmas shopping, or if you’re looking for a treat for yourself to celebrate getting all those presents bought and wrapped, Times Online has an article suggesting nine books that would make great gifts for anyone who appreciates photography. From portraits in 1920’s Paris to “a wry look at the fantasies of war in the United States since 9/11″, there’s a good variety in the suggestions.

The article contains links to a UK based website where all the books are available at discounted price (some more so than others) but for US readers below are the links to the books on Amazon.com:

Berenice Abbot by Hank O’Neal & Berenice Abbot

Manuel Alvarez Bravo by Jean-Claude Lemagny, Colette Alvarez Urbatjel, & John Banville

Vanishing Landscapes by  John J Berger, Robert Adams,  Edward Burtynsky, Thomas Struth, & Jem Southam

Homeland by Nina Berman

Kaveh Golestan: Recording the Truth in Iran 1950 – 2003 by Masoud Behnoud, Hengameh Golestan

Recollections by Philip Jones Griffiths (this link is to Amazon UK, I couldn’t find the book available from Amazon USA, Borders, Barnes & Noble, or Powell’s)

Richard Avedon: Portraits of Power by Renata Adler & Frank Goodyear

Objects by Martin Parr (only available as a used book on Amazon USA)

Edward Steichen: In High Fashion by William A Ewing & Todd Brandow

Christmas Photos to Get You in the Holiday Spirit

Christmas Wonder If you need a little inspiration to get into the holiday spirit check out this little collection of Christmas photos from a variety of location around the world, including the USA, Germany, South Korea, and the Czech Republic. From an underwater Santa with a beluga whale to a 33 metre high Christmas tree shaped cake there’s sure to be at least one photo that gets you humming “’tis the season…”.

Or if Santa with a beluga whale isn’t your thing how about people wrapped in strings of Christmas lights? Digital Photo School has found twenty Flickr photos of people trimming humans with lights instead of the tree. (Be warned there are one or two people wearing not much other than the string of lights!)

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