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I think if our eyes are good there are not many situations where we naturally percieve a shallow DOF. How is it that lenses create this? What happens for shallow DOF to happen in photos and on movies?

marked as duplicate by mattdm lens Sep 6 '18 at 10:58

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  • I think the shallow DOF happens to the human eye too, but since we have the most magnificent computer as brain and eyes that take more than one picture to form a... well picture. So IMHO the brain makes the picture and calculates the DOF away – Alexander von Wernherr Sep 6 '18 at 10:57
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    I've marked this as a duplicate because I'm pretty sure the other question answers it completely, even including the part about human eyes. Let me know if there's something not covered! – mattdm Sep 6 '18 at 10:59
  • @AlexandervonWernherr Human eyes do have shallow DOF. We don't see it because of constant refocusing and saccades. When we try to look, our eyes refocus before we have a chance to notice it wasn't in focus. It's actually worse than just shallow DOF. Resolution drops off significantly outside of a central sweet spot, and there is a huge blind spot devoid of any photoreceptors. If the eye were a digital camera, most of us wouldn't buy it. – xiota Sep 6 '18 at 17:29
  • Thanks for your comments and answers. I am really wanting to find a very clear, simple explanation of the difference in the way DOF is recorded by cameras and the way we see. – Kevin Landwer-Johan Sep 8 '18 at 10:11
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Good question I think.

However, I don't agree with "if our eyes are good there are not many situations where we naturally percieve a shallow DOF". I can perceive a blurred background right now, over the top of my monitor, in the distance. If I look at the distance, it comes into focus—just like a camera can change focus. But the difference between a photo and what you see is that with a photo, you can closely examine the out-of-focus areas that the camera captured; with your eyes, you can't really closely examine out-of-focus areas, because your eye will naturally then just bring them into focus.

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    If you happen to live in the western US, there are some specific plants that can help you focus in on the out of focus areas of your vision. – Hueco Sep 6 '18 at 14:46

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