From Blurry to Focused

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Avatar of Margaret Zimmerman
Margaret Zimmerman on July 20, 2012 at 5:18 pm

Okay, so a friend of mine has a Canon 5D Mark II, and we’re making a video. Keep in mind that this camera is…new to both of us. We want a shot that starts completely blurred, and then focuses in on an object on the sidewalk. When ever we try to in manual mode, the lens focuses correctly when we start filming, and it only blurs out a little. I feel like the answer is really obvious XD but help us out?

Avatar of Jesse Cornaglia
Jesse Cornaglia on July 21, 2012 at 1:37 pm

What your looking for is depth of field. In order to achieve this you need to open up your aperture. On the camera you should be adjusting the F/ setting. The smaller the number the more blurry the image will be. For a really shallow depth of field make the number as low as possible. This will also make your image more bright and sharp. A good number to show really shallow depth of field is usually around 1.8 to 1.4. That might not be possible depending on what type of lens you guys got with your camera.

Avatar of Kurt Zhuang
Kurt Zhuang on July 28, 2012 at 2:15 am

It sounds like you’re shooting outside. You’ll want to keep your shutter speed at 1/50 to keep motion natural. That doesn’t leave you many options for your aperture as you will have to stop down (increase the F number) to maintain proper exposure. One way to fight this is to get an Neutral Density (ND) filter.

Lucky for you, there are more factors to manipulating depth-of-field than just aperture.

Distance, focal length and sensor size also come into play. The 5D has a massive sensor and thus will have an advantage at getting shallow DOF. If you increase the focal length to something long, like an 85mm, then you should have no trouble getting shallow DOF, even stopped down to 3.5 or more.

Distance – the closer the object to the camera, and the farther away the background is, the blurrier the separation.

I hope I got that all.. correctly.

  • This reply was modified 1912 days ago by Avatar of Kurt Zhuang Kurt Zhuang.
  • This reply was modified 1912 days ago by Avatar of Kurt Zhuang Kurt Zhuang.
Avatar of Margaret Zimmerman
Margaret Zimmerman on July 28, 2012 at 2:48 pm

Great tips you guys! :D I’m not with my friend right now, but when we shoot next I’ll be sure to print this page out first. Thanks for the input. I’ll reply back after we test this stuff out.

Avatar of Margaret Zimmerman
Margaret Zimmerman on August 13, 2012 at 12:41 am

K so you were all a big help! We got the footage we needed! Thanks again! We’re going to edit this week and I’m actually feeling pretty good about it. I’ll post it in the showcase when it’s done. :)

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