Introspectives #25

To blur or not to blur and even how not to – that is the question.

Out of Focus blur: I often feel as though I am shooting in the dark when taking photos – at any time of day. When I relied on the camera’s  LCD screen (until its recent water damaged demise) sunlight would inevitably make seeing difficult. Now I have to use the viewfinder which is a bit of a strain, not least because I wear glasses. The cumbersomeness of lens bumping against the rubber eyecup makes steadiness of hand more difficult as well as seeing less clearly.

wild carrot blossom and eristalis hoverflies
Diptera not to be confused with Diopters

But now I have discovered diopters (dioptre UK)! That is the little wheel situated adjacent to the viewfinder.

“A diopter is an optical unit of measurement of how much light is bent (refracted) over a distance of 1 meter.  By adjusting your diopter wheel in the + direction you are adding more “farsighted” correction…the – direction is adding more  “nearsighted” correction. “

What is more, I had not realised that I will not need to wear my glasses to focus…approximately 90 per cent of photographers get along without them, once having adjusted the diopter. The downside is it needs to be done frequently as the wheel can be accidentally moved.

I am slightly short-sighted (myopic) but also long-sighted (presbyopic)

People with presbyopia have a real advantage when photographing without spectacles. Since the refractive power of the viewfinder is calibrated so that objects at a distance of one meter are in focus, the sight problem is thus rectified.

Camera Shake Blur: I do have a hand tremor so ensure that the camera’s built in shake reduction is switched on (some cameras have this built into the lens instead).  A tripod helps too -when I can be bothered to wield it – and employing a timer delay after the shutter is released, ensures extra stability.

Intentional blur: Motion blur or intentional camera movement works best when camera shake reduction is switched off. Off focus blurring is used for artistic effect with abstract composition or to enhance certain moods. Or as here, when I simply wanted to point and shoot regardless. [click for closer view]

Postscript: I did manage some clearer, cleaner shots too but they are for another time.

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Introspectives: Thinking out loud with an aim to improve and learn more about photography. Hence the images are not always for show – feedback is welcome.

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16 thoughts on “Introspectives #25

  1. I’ve been meaning to experiment with intentional blur, but my first thought then was “How will people know it was intentional, and not just think I messed up!?”. Reading your post, though, I think I’ve just overcome that thought. Who cares – I’m going to experiment this weekend 🙂

  2. Hi, your blur seems to work beautifully in these photos as it has a tendency to add a bit of mystery and mystique to the images. I personally think they are very nicely done. Blessings

  3. I think the dioptre adjustmant should be more widely publicised – it would make things so much easier for many people. I did already know to look for it on a camera (thanks to a photographer father perhaps?) and can’t imagine how I would be sure that my photos were sharp if I didn’t use it. Of course, sometimes they are still blurred, but maybe I can refer to it as intentional blur after reading your post! 🙂

    1. I did not even see the dioptre wheel until man in camera shop pointed it out – perhaps they could make it in bright stand out colours rather than the blended version! The line of desirability between pin sharp and blurry is itself murky Elaine – thanks for your feedback

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