Understanding Bokeh - Trust Me Shops

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Understanding Bokeh

Understanding Bokeh

B&H explora - All posts
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Specular out-of-focus highlights have appeared in photographs since the first photos were taken through lenses. In 1997, Photo Techniques magazine introduced the word “bokeh” to the photography world’s vernacular and the out-of-focus areas of photographs have been scrutinized ever since. Before the term, there was certainly discussion about the aesthetics of the out-of-focus specular highlights of a photograph, but until 1997, there wasn’t a good word in the English language to describe the phenomenon. Credit goes to Mike Johnston, article writers Carl Weese, John Kennerdell, and Oren Grad, the Internet, and a word that no one can agree on how to pronounce, for creating a blurry background craze.

Today, there are video and photography companies, movies, software, Photoshop plug-ins, film festivals, throw pillows, a Facebook page, creative cutout plates to cover your lens, Waterhouse plates, iPhone apps, and more named “Bokeh.” A smartphone recently touted its ability to produce “bokeh” as a selling point for its built-in camera. Other smartphone cameras have algorithms in their electronic brains that can create artificial bokeh on images when their lenses fail to produce the effect. There is even a nutrition website featuring an article on using bokeh in food photography. At press time, there are more than 7.2 million images on Instagram with the bokeh hashtag. That is about 1 million #bokeh images more per year since I last counted. Getty Images has more than 220,000 stock bokeh photos to choose from if you need some bokeh in your life right now. Do a Google search for “What is bokeh?” and you will get more than 32.5 million results—and more than 24,000 if you use quotation marks.

Let’s clear up a few things before we dive in.

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