1

I want to take a picture showing something disappearing off to infinity, representing that by the subject getting blurry as it recedes. I thought a tall power pole was a good subject, but the best I have done is shown. This was shot using a Canon M6 Mk II (APS-C sensor) and 35 mm f/3.5 focused at about 6 ft, which is closer than anything in the frame. I shot four horizontal frames from the ground near the pole, leaving the focus and exposure the same for all the shots. I then merged them to Panorama in Lightroom using the Perspective option, then cropped a bit of the width. I could open the lens more, there was a glitch that day, but it doesn't feel close to what I was wanting at all. Suggestions?enter image description here Can one do a graduated blur filter in Photoshop?

2
  • Did you leave focus manually set where it was for the closest shot as you moved up the pole getting your frames for the panorama?
    – Michael C
    May 18 at 3:12
  • @MichaelC: Yes, the focus and exposure were manual and the same for all the shots. I'll edit that in. May 18 at 3:26
1

Sounds like you're basically trying to create a 'bokehrama', i.e., the Brenizer method, where you stitch together several shots to simulate otherwise impossible shallow depth of field, such apparent apertures wider than f/.5.

Because you're stitching images to create a wider field of view, thereby reducing the apparent size of distant points, you need to start with as wide an aperture as possible, with a long focal length lens (that is, narrow field of view).

And because the "infinity" subject (the top of the pole) is really only about 50' away (guessing), you need to focus about as close as you can. Think of it this way: in macro photography, just about everything beyond a couple focal lengths or so is pretty much completely out of focus (which is what you're goin after).

So:

  1. Longer focal length. At least 100mm.
  2. The wider the aperture, the better.
  3. Closer focus. Probably 3–4 ft if you can.

Because of those constraints, your best results will be with a prime portrait lens, perhaps a macro lens (but macros tend not to be as fast as good prime portraits).

4
  • Thanks. I'll give that a try. The 35mm goes wider, but none of my longer lenses do. May 18 at 14:02
  • 1
    I went out to try this but my favorite pole was not available. I tried on a different pole, which I could only get within 10 feet of. It helped a lot. I wanted to have the closest part in decent focus, so I didn't focus too close. I had the idea to start with f/4 at the bottom and open the lens a stop every couple shots, cutting the shutter time to keep the exposure constant. It seems to work well, though the last two of the shots wouldn't merge in. Thank you much. May 19 at 0:52
  • @RossMillikan The closer you can get, coupled with closer focusing, will get you blurrier results further away.
    – scottbb
    May 19 at 2:32
  • 1
    Getting close is just what is needed. I finally recalled that even 5 feet is over 40 focal lengths for a 35mm lens, so is already most of the way to infinity. May 22 at 23:07
1

As scottbb said, getting closer was the ticket. It was a journey that had me abandon the panorama approach. One image I like is below. The 15-45 lens for my Canon M6 focuses rather close. I cropped the bottom of the photo which was too close for the focus, but this is 15mm and f/10. enter image description here

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.