I really like this photo and was wondering how I can achieve something similar?


I had a look at some tutorials to do with making things look miniature (tilt shift photography) ...


but I'm not convinced that this is what is being done to photo?



2 Answers 2


I'm thinking that this is a case of a stitched shallow DOF panorama -- which is popularly known as the Brenizer Method.

Here's a tutorial on how it's being done:


  • \$\begingroup\$ +1 - Looking at the examples on that site, this does look eerily similar to the Brenizer Method to me. \$\endgroup\$
    – rfusca
    Commented Aug 15, 2011 at 18:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ Wow. That is labor intensive process. I think I'd rather get a real tilt shift then doing this kind of work every time. I bet telling a wedding party at a ceremony to be still for 30 seconds is not a crowd favorite either... \$\endgroup\$ Commented Aug 16, 2011 at 2:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ Considering that much of the work is done via computer and autostitching software, it doesn't seem any more daunting than any other extra large panorama. The actual shoot seems pretty straightforward: manual settings, jpg for speed, machine gun in a spiral with overlap. The real time consumption is helping the computer number crunch. \$\endgroup\$
    – smigol
    Commented Aug 16, 2011 at 5:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ I made a Suggested edit, but as.I don't know.if the user is active, here is the archive.org link to most of the content: web.archive.org/web/20140906213443/http://blog.buiphotos.com/… \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 28, 2020 at 3:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ And this is the link for the blog post of the original creator of the method: web.archive.org/web/20090611040749/http://www.amazon.com/gp/… \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 28, 2020 at 3:38

That image looks like it was taken with either a real tilt-shift or just a really shallow depth of field.

edit - this quotation from the photographer's profile seems to confirm this:

I do edit and enhance some of my photos (not all), but all manipulation is always kept to a minimum in my photography. I take pride in my skill and the knowledge I have that goes into taking a good photograph, and I would never spoil this with the ease of photo manipulation. That's a different art.

The problem with those simple fake tilt shift tutorials is that they only work when you have an image taken from above looking down, so that distance decreases from top to bottom in the image. The source image in the link you posted is a good example of this.

The Flickr image you posted was taken from a lower viewpoint level with the subject. To get this effect in Photoshop you'd have to mask the person first so the blurring effect is not applied to them, otherwise their head would be just as blurry as the background. This adds a level of complexity generally not covered by "fake miniature" tutorials.

  • \$\begingroup\$ You are right, the tutorials usually just cover images that are shot from a high perspective. These are probably shot with the real thing. \$\endgroup\$
    – dpollitt
    Commented Aug 15, 2011 at 13:38

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