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15*365: Understanding Selective Focus

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This morning I popped outside to take some photos for a review I was writing of Gringa Loka dog treats. (Yes, this is Tiki and Irie’s favorite part of their jobs!) The above photo that I used in the review is an example of working with selective focus to get the most out of your photo.

In a nutshell, selective focus means choosing what item in your photo you’d like to be in focus. In the above case, it’s the treat. You’ll see that Irie’s not in focus. Because the depth of field in this photo is shallow, only a little bit past the point of focus (the treat) is in sharp focus.

But that’s just what I wanted. I wanted the treat to be the focal point of the photo. Irie (who’s looking very anxious for that treat) is out of focus but still very important to the photo.

I could have focused on Irie instead. Here’s a photo I shot with the focus off of the cookie:

That photo (which was an accident…you can see that her collar is in better focus than her eyes) would work if Irie were the focal point of the story but, since this was a post about the treats, the top photo works better! Of course, you can play around with the placement of the item in the foreground and your dog in the background, like this photo I shot later of another kind of treats (Pawmetto):

Just be careful of the cookie monster!

I was so busy looking through the viewfinder, that I didn’t see Irie coming over to do a little treat testing!

Give selective focusing a try, whether you use a dog toy or treat or two dogs at different distances from your camera! And be sure to leave us a comment below and attach a photo using the + link to share the fun!

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Cynthia Downer

Tuesday 17th of January 2012

Zora and Addiction Meaty Bites. I used a couple of photos with your tips on my blog post! :D http://myhouseholdzoo.blogspot.com/2012/01/training-for-zora-and-myself.html Or at least I tried lol ): It's not so easy in a low-light room.

Paris & John

Friday 20th of January 2012

Your shots turned out great!! It is so tough to shoot indoors, sometimes; our house is pretty dark so I definitely know how that goes. A lot of times I rest the camera on the coffee table and shoot photos from there (I have a tripod but sometimes it's just too much trouble!) Paris

Natasha

Tuesday 17th of January 2012

Annie's toy :)

Paris & John

Friday 20th of January 2012

Aww...what a sweet photo...Annie's looking at that toy! Paris

Heather 'Wilcox' Beals

Monday 16th of January 2012

Colossus & his favorite toy :) 

Paris & John

Friday 20th of January 2012

What a great photo (and I just love that little peek of tongue sticking out!!)

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