With fancy dual and triple camera phones, you can set the depth of field of your images using a simple slider. But did you know you can do it in Photoshop, too, after you’ve taken the photo? Colin Smith of photoshopCAFE figured out a way to refocus images in Photoshop after they were shot, and he’s sharing it with you in his latest video tutorial.
When you’re shooting landscapes, the biggest challenge is getting images clean and sharp from front to back. You’d think it’s quite simple. Focus on infinity and away you go right? Well, not so much. That often puts things in the foreground out of focus. So, how you can you get everything sharp?
In this video from NatureTTL, Ross Hoddinott walks us through various techniques to get maximum sharpness throughout your scene.
Often, we hear much talk about the advantages and disadvantages of phase detection vs contrast-based autofocus systems. But not everybody knows what that means or why it matters. I had a rough idea, but I didn’t really understand it myself until I watched this video from photographer David Flores for B&H. In it, David explains how each of the two systems work, when it’s best to use one or the other, and how various camera AF systems work today using one or a combination of both methods.
Zone focusing is a term that often seems to confuse people. But if you don’t know what it is, then it’s quite easy to understand why. It’s a common technique for a lot of subjects, and particularly for street photography. I often use it myself because it means I can just raise my camera, take the shot and know it’s in focus where it needs to be.
This video from photographer David Coleman explains exactly what zone focusing is, with several ways to implement it in your shoot workflow. Once mastered, it can be a fantastic way to let you shoot with confidence on the street, just knowing that your subject is in focus.
When you’re a one man video shooting band, keeping your subject sharp and in focus can be a huge pain. If you don’t have a focus puller following you around, or fancy remote control focus systems, it’s a constant struggle. That’s why we often see cameras locked off on tripods and sliders with static subjects that rarely move.
But there are some techniques you can use to keep your subject sharp and in focus when filming solo. Filmmaker Parker Walbeck demonstrates some of these techniques in this recently video. None of these techniques are always perfect, though, and Parker talks about the advantages and disadvantages of each.
Whenever I buy a new lens, I have to calibrate it and AF fine tune five different DSLRs. Two are my primary stills shooters, and three are for video. But if I only have the video DSLRs out with me, and want to grab a few quick behind the scenes shots, I need to know their AF is spot on. So, I use the SpyderLENSCAL to calibrate every lens with every body. For me, it’s worth the cost.
If you’ve only got one camera and one or two lenses that you’ll only need to calibrate once, though, it might seem like a bit of a high expense. You buy it, use it once or twice, and then it just sits in a box. Well, there are other options. You can make your own. This video from Crafty Cams has been out for a while, but it’s recently become popular again and it’s well worth a watch.
Here’s a (semi) fun way to start the year off right – it’s time to calibrate the focus of your lenses!
Most DSLRs offer options for “micro adjustment” or to “fine tune” the focus of attached lenses. If you happen to use Sigma ART series lenses, you can also use Sigma’s USB Dock for even more refined lens focus calibrations.
It’s died down a little now, but last year there was an insane craze surrounding the Sigma Art series lenses so much so that I actually ended up buying 2 of them, selling them, then borrowing them again in the future for other shoots when I had no money.
To be clear from the outset, I actually think the Sigma Art lenses kick serious ass, the sharpness, the focus ring, build quality, the price. They are “cheap enough” ($900 for 35mm f/1.4 or $950 for 50mm f/1.4) and give you some serious firepower in the lens department. But after all of this, after all of these wonderful points, I STILL sold the 50mm and the 35mm because of one key factor. I think the bokeh sucks.
Focus and depth of field are those kinds of topics that can quickly confuse newer photographers. When we’re just starting out, we think we know what it means, but our pictures are still blurred or everything’s too sharp and detailed and we don’t understand why.
Designed for both the land and air, the new DJI Focus remote follow focus system wants to change the way we record our aerial footage.
No longer are we limited to hyperfocal distance and infinity focus lenses that have everything sharp. Now, we’re able to nail focus on our subject and use cinematic focus pulling techniques while shooting from the skies.