Pigs in a Bokeh

Bokeh - the visual quality of the out-of-focus areas of a photographic image, especially as rendered by a particular lens.

My students will ask me, "You know, when there's part so a picture that are blurry? How can I do that?" This is a very popular question in all of my classes. This question is an excellent way to teach about the Fstop setting on a camera. The lower the Fstop number, the wider the opening in your lens will be and will allow you to create some awesome bokeh!

I made this "aperture box" prop to show how aperture (f/stop), the size of the opening inside your lens allows light to pass through.

We used holiday lights to really show off the cool bokeh in our pictures.

On the day these were taken, I was at Arbor Montessori working with Lower and Upper Elementary (6-12). This is such a great group of kids, they always take everything one step further creatively.

The assignment was for them to set up some lights in the background of their image and use their favorite plastic animals as models posed in front of the lights.

Who doesn't love little plastic animals?

I the farther away from the subject is from the lights the more "blur" you will get on them when focused on the subject.

Focus on the subject important when creating awesome creamy, dreamy bokeh.

They also learned that were you focus the camera is VERY important when using a low fstop number. You can see that. In this picture the photographers have more focus on the ducks than the lights thus creating that neato bokeh effect!

Here, you can see they focused oh the lighst in teh background making the ducks super blurry.

I allowed the students to use some prety fancy lesnses for this project so we could use as low as possible fstops. They used a Canon 24-70mm 2.8, Canon, 50mm 1.4, Canon 60mm 2.8 and a Tamron 28-70mm 2.8.

Enjoy this gallery of their work from that day! "I am a bunch of creative opportunities rolled up into a fragile little ball that breaks every 5 nanoseconds" - Simone (upper elementary)

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