Home > Photo Tips > 14- Depth Of Field- The Holy Grail

14- Depth Of Field- The Holy Grail

This is probably the tip I get the most requests for. Except it is rarely asked in that form. Usually it comes in the package resembling “How do I make the background blurry?”.

So in the interest of geek knowledge let’s define the term correctly. We are talking about DEPTH OF FIELD.

It will be tempting to accidentally call this “Depth Of Focus”. Don’t. You will look like an idiot. Depth of focus is something else.

Depth of field determines how much of our image is in acceptable focus. More often than not people want to know how to blur the background rather than make sure everything is in focus. This is because your Point And Shoot camera keeps damn near everything in focus and you since you spent all that money on a DSLR you want to show it off. I don’t blame you. Controlling your DOF rules.

Focus is determined by distance from the camera. Therefore if your subject is in focus at 12 feet, EVERYTHING that is 12 feet away will be in focus. Objects that are closer and further away than 12 feet will be in varying degrees of focus.

There are a few factors that determine your DOF. I’ll separate them into different posts to hopefully limit the confusion.

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