Photoshop CS6 Blur Gallery Tutorial

The new Blur Gallery in Photoshop CS6 offers tools that provide intuitive and creative ways to manipulate depth of field and create bokeh effects.

One of my favorite features introduced in the Photoshop CS6 beta is without a doubt the Blur Gallery. This collection of three brand new filters allows for photo-realistic depth of field adjustments via an interface which allows you to place and manipulate controls directly on the image area.

Photographers rely on focal length, subject distance and aperture to determine in-focus and blurred areas of an image. Yet there are times when technical constraints make a desired effect difficult to achieve. And that's where these new tools come in handy.

Unlike the blur options in previous versions of Photoshop, the Blur Gallery filters are designed specifically to produce a selective focus effect. The Blur Gallery is comprised of three filters; Field Blur, Iris Blur and Tilt-Shift. In addition there are a separate set of Blur Effects that let you create specular highlights mimicking the circular bokeh effect produced by lenses. In this article I’ll show you how these tools work and hopefully inspire you to start using them on your own images.

You can find the new blur tools by going to Filter>Blur. Selecting one of the top three options (highlighted in red) will open the new Blur Gallery. The Blur Gallery opens in a full size window that temporarily replaces your regular workspace. Panels along the right give you access to all three of the blur filters as well as bokeh adjustments.

Because the blur filters are applied directly to the image pixels, rather than as a layer adjustment, I strongly recommend that you first duplicate the background layer of your image before applying any of these filters. If your image already contains multiple layers, select the topmost layer and merge the visible layers into a new additional layer by pressing  Command + Shift + Option + E  (Ctrl + Shift + Alt + E on Windows). Then go to Filter>Blur and choose either Field Blur, Iris Blur or Tilt-Shift.)  This will open the Blur Gallery.

Field Blur

Field Blur is the simplest of the three filters to use, but offers the least amount of direct control. When you select this option in the Filter menu, the image opens in a full size editing window. An active 'pin' is automatically placed in the center of the image, surrounded by an adjustment ring (the gray circle partially covered in white). At this point the entire image is blurred to the degree specified in the adjustment ring.

Field Blur opens with a 'pin' placed in the center of the image surrounded by an adjustment ring that applies a  blur to the entire image.

With your cursor on or near the adjustment ring you can drag your mouse along the ring's edge to adjust the blur amount. You'll see the blur value update (an example of of CS6's 'rich cursor' feature) as you move the mouse. Alternatively you can use the slider in the Field Blur panel. 

OK, so we've made the entire image blurry. Big deal. The fun starts as you add additional pins to the image. Move your cursor away from the adjustment ring and you’ll see the cursor now appears as a small pushpin with an plus sign alongside it. In this 'add pin' mode, simply click to place a new blur control so that you can specify a different  blur intensity at that image location. A blur setting of 0 prevents any blur from taking place, protecting or masking out that area of the image.

Place two pins on a single image and Photoshop creates a linear gradient that makes a smooth transition between the effects of each pin. Place three or more pins and Photoshop then constrains the effect of each pin to the image area in its immediate vicinity. You can place as many pins as you like on an image.

You can apply as many pins, at varied settings as needed to apply blur to some areas of the image while protecting areas you wish to remain sharp.
Press and hold the M key to see the actual blur mask. Areas in white have a blur applied to them while areas in black have been protected. Shades of gray represent partially affected regions.

You can see that I've added a lot of pins in this example in order to restrict the blur effects to specific areas of the image. Note that each pin can be set to its own blur value, so the real value of Filed Blur comes if you're prepared to place and adjust multiple points on an image, which admittedly can take time to get the precise results you're after.

Here's the original image. The background is distracting.
Using the Field Blur I was able to slightly blur the background, drawing attention to the dog chasing the kite.

I was able to create a gradual transition in the amount of blur on the sand by applying several pins at different intensities, but this also required numerous pins to protect the dog.

Images like this one with complex elements like the 'flying' fur of the dog call up some limitations of the Field Blur tool. If you look closely you'll find areas around the edges of the subject that will require some clean-up work with Photoshop's clone/healing tools.

While this may seem like an awful lot of work, one of the things I like best about Field Blur is that it tends to lead to more realistic results with natural-looking transitions that looks as if they could have actually been done in-camera. The Iris Blur filter, which we'll examine on the following page, can produce results with less effort. Yet it is very easy to produce an overdone result that any experienced photographer will recognize as a post processing edit.

Click here to continue reading our Photoshop CS6 Blur Gallery tutorial...

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions held by dpreview.com or any affiliated companies.

Comments

Total comments: 168
12
richard rivota
By richard rivota (Jul 21, 2012)

thanks a lot that someone like you shared this kind of new knowledge to photography enthusiast

1 upvote
Maerks
By Maerks (Jun 11, 2012)

I don't know what to say! I'm in awe! Thank you so much Ellen :)

1 upvote
Kelly Bellis
By Kelly Bellis (Jun 10, 2012)

I haven't even finished reading it and just had to stop and write: Ellen, this is a wonderful article - thank you very much for writing it. I've got it open alongside of an editing session - very neat set of new tools in CS6! Your tutorial is well written and well presented.

One idea that springs up right away: it would be cool if right clicking over any one blur pin offered the option to copy that pin / settings.

Thanks again - can't wait to finish reading this tutorial :)

Kelly

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
1 upvote
sean lancaster
By sean lancaster (May 23, 2012)

I used to be a purist about photography and post processing. But then I realized that the bokeh that a really nice Zeiss or Leica lens provides is actually artificial compared to what my eyes are really seeing. We see the dog and the background. Just because I buy a nice full frame camera and fast lens doesn't mean that I am now doing something authentic; rather, I am manipulating tools to give me a pleasant artificial look. Why not allow post processing if it can do the same trick? That being said, I prefer the nice equipment over the time spent post processing to get this effect.

3 upvotes
MIKE GG
By MIKE GG (May 15, 2012)

really... come on... its so un-natural it makes me nauseous

0 upvotes
boyzo
By boyzo (May 14, 2012)

Thanks Ellen good examples
I have used these tools ...worth the upgrade

2 upvotes
Jim in AZ
By Jim in AZ (May 12, 2012)

I wish adobe just made a bokeh brush.

0 upvotes
mamiya777
By mamiya777 (May 5, 2012)

thank you Elen

2 upvotes
mbrobich
By mbrobich (Apr 15, 2012)

If the recipient of the photo is happy with the result, whether he is a paying customer or not, then we have to consider success. For those who are claiming this REAL or NOT real, too bad life goes on and we must accept it. How many times have you sold some of your work and not modified it using any type of software. Even in film photography, all kinds of processing tricks are used to make a customer happy !

2 upvotes
madeinlisboa
By madeinlisboa (Apr 10, 2012)

I do that with CaptureNX for years. The sad part is that an average photographer can be regarded as a great one. No photo can be considered real anymore and this is worrying.

1 upvote
NinpouKobanashi
By NinpouKobanashi (Apr 12, 2012)

The dog example looks like poop. Keep your lenses.

2 upvotes
DVT80111
By DVT80111 (Apr 15, 2012)

What is the definition of real? A blurry background created by a fast lens is different from what your eye capture, so why is it considered real?

When was the last time you watch a real movie?

2 upvotes
nofumble
By nofumble (Apr 8, 2012)

I tried the new feature to make blurry background of an image taken by an iPad3. The new feature is absolutely fantastic. I used to do with layers in CS4 and 5, but not impressed. This new feature is much faster and very intuitive.

http://i1068.photobucket.com/albums/u445/Tukee44/Flower-Ipad3.jpg
http://i1068.photobucket.com/albums/u445/Tukee44/Flower_CS6.jpg

I hope Adobe will offer student discount.

2 upvotes
photoshopuser
By photoshopuser (Apr 7, 2012)

if you can afford pscs6 you can afford fast glass, this is a nice add on to fool around with and is nice to have, im more interested in fixing a bad blur shot that to make a out of focus worse than it is. I love ps for years now and having more tools added is nice, the feather that i think most people will like more is that fix blur option, only time will tell if it makes it into this version when its out and how well it works. Also any glass that's at least f8 makes nice boken its all how you use it. the average consumer dont have the correct tools to out put the high quality from a 12mp camera further more a 48mp censor.

1 upvote
Hussain Ally
By Hussain Ally (Apr 7, 2012)

What a great software..Must own it soon !!!

1 upvote
jugnutoor
By jugnutoor (Apr 7, 2012)

Nice article giving info on this new tool, it will really augment creativity from where camera gear can not proceed further.

3 upvotes
ManuelVilardeMacedo
By ManuelVilardeMacedo (Apr 7, 2012)

"From where camera gear can not proceed further". At that point can it still be considered photography?
Just asking.

0 upvotes
NinpouKobanashi
By NinpouKobanashi (Apr 12, 2012)

Yes, just not documentary photography, photojournalism, etc.

0 upvotes
JGreen2011
By JGreen2011 (Apr 3, 2012)

Hi Ellen. I love your signature. What font did you use?

0 upvotes
Ellen Anon
By Ellen Anon (Apr 4, 2012)

Thanks - it's P22 Zaner from MyFonts.com

1 upvote
zoomring
By zoomring (Apr 2, 2012)

sorry, but that sample with the dog is just horrible, looks like someone took an eraser and tried to mannually scrub out the background. This may fool novices but once they start to recognize natural background blur, they will drop this filter like a bad habit.

3 upvotes
pdqgp
By pdqgp (Apr 2, 2012)

I use Alien Skin Bokeh and love it. Not only does the bokeh appear more realistic but it's very quick and with just a couple minutes work I made the after image look way better than the one shown here with CS6.

0 upvotes
rondhamalam
By rondhamalam (Apr 1, 2012)

Bit Too LATE...

Picasa (google photographic software) has done it since three years ago.

The wife loves it for dealing with her 5D2 results

0 upvotes
Ace Disgrace
By Ace Disgrace (Mar 31, 2012)

Its funny how much negative comments from a noob in PS or should i say who have zero knowledge in the SW. How much can u judge from a 2D image in its real distance if ur not the one who took the photo? So many people think they know so much about photography that they can judge which one is real or not. Be real and embrace the technology. Be thankful somebody is sharing their knowledge in these things.

3 upvotes
Craig76
By Craig76 (Apr 1, 2012)

The 'technology' is not going to be able to make an F/16 shot look the same as an F/2.8 one. As I pointed out before, look at the trees on the cityscape shot. The top half of the tree is blurred out as if it is receeded further into the distance even though it is on the same focal plane as the rest of the tree..... How anyone can look at this tutorial and tool as some sort of revolution is beyond me. And yes I have the beta of CS6 also.

5 upvotes
h2k
By h2k (Apr 1, 2012)

Fully agreed with Craig. Of course you can mask the trees out. In some simple pictures the Tilt-Shift filter might work without masking, when there are no trees, lamp posts or such interrupting the scenery, but usually you have to mask something - even though i suspect people won't mask anything and will be very happy anyway.
What the filter has, it can distort the blurred foreground, to mimic lens distortion. But it can not raise saturation to give a slightly plasticky toy look.

0 upvotes
Ace Disgrace
By Ace Disgrace (Apr 1, 2012)

??? Some may have any version of PS but it doesnt mean they know how to use it. I would rather process a photo shot at F16 to look like F2.8 of trees... It can be done and not only by "masking" it will take a lot of time in tedious work, but who would do that? Unless im being paid a good amount of $ for it... Even expert PS users would get some new discoveries even in years of using it. Well if we talk about saturation... Bring it to LR... Man... Pffff still goes to my first comment noob in PS

1 upvote
Craig76
By Craig76 (Apr 1, 2012)

With careful masking, removing (deleting to prevent bleed) the trees, then layering things. Im not saying its impossible to create a fake DOF change. Will it look the same as shot at a shallow DOF to begin with? Probably depends a bit on the complexity of the scene. In general? I would say no. Bottom line, this is nothing revolutionary and does not take the place of shooting the image with the DOF you want to begin with.

I think that first shot with the flowers gives a false impression of what this filter in CS6 is capable of. That image had already been shot at a shallow DOF and was simply accentuated a bit by additional blurring.

My galleries can be seen here http://www.pbase.com/cpilecky

I am not a newb as people like to say. I am a professional graphic designer. I am finishing my first book. I know how to use Photoshop. Ok? Can we stop calling people names?

Heres a rough of the cover http://www.pbase.com/cpilecky/image/142431292

Comment edited 9 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Craig76
By Craig76 (Apr 1, 2012)

One thing I do like about CS6 is the new oil filter. I ran that filter on one of my old landscapes to give it more of a painted look.

http://www.pbase.com/cpilecky/image/142345550

1 upvote
ezradja
By ezradja (Mar 31, 2012)

Very nice new feature there .. Kudos to Adobe...

1 upvote
Joshlovesphotos
By Joshlovesphotos (Mar 30, 2012)

Ohhhhh, now I get it, this is an April fools joke!!!! (should be)

3 upvotes
Joshlovesphotos
By Joshlovesphotos (Mar 30, 2012)

The cornflower shot looks very unrealistic in the sense that the dof to distance is not accurate on the flowers, since both flowers should not appear with the same focus plane, the stem on the taller flower has no graduated dof moving vertically, meaning that it is not leaving forward into the front flowers focal plane, I guess that is the idea, to make the impossible, possible.

I'd rather exaggerate already existing dof, not make the impossible, possible. I'm not into abstract or impressionistic art, I'm into realism with a bit of lucid dream mixed in, hence why I bought a camera, to reproduce a scene, not to make up a scene.

0 upvotes
Ellen Anon
By Ellen Anon (Mar 31, 2012)

Just to clarify, the depth of field on those two flowers is entirely natural and done in camera. The PS blur was only applied to the background to blur it slightly more than what was possible with that particular lens. Often it's difficult to blur the background as much as one might like with most wide angle lenses.

4 upvotes
Craig76
By Craig76 (Mar 30, 2012)

The tilt shift effect with the guy on the stairs is not very good. Its to obvious where the edge of the blur is. Also the top half of the trees wouldn't be blurred like that. Its not realistic and its distracting. These additional tools may prove useful under some circumstances, but the way they are being shown here is not very good IMO.

It would be much easier, and you would get much better results, if you just knew how you wanted to take the shot in the first place and then did it that way. When your doing the shoot if your not sure if you want a shallow DOF or not take one each way and then decide later.

3 upvotes
SamTruax
By SamTruax (Mar 30, 2012)

It's just awful. Is there another 'final' version of that dog photo? It doesn't look like bokeh at all. It looks like smudges. Lens bokeh doesn't smudge the background. Sorry, I just don't get it. It certainly doesn't look any better than Fuji's Pro Focus mode or Sony's version on their point & shoots...it usually just doesn't look realistic. Just like this.

8 upvotes
aleckurgan
By aleckurgan (Mar 30, 2012)

guys at adobe have some weird sense of humour :)

1 upvote
h2k
By h2k (Mar 30, 2012)

What i criticize in this filter so far (it's a beta):
- Pins cannot be duplicated by Alt-dragging
- You cannot load alpha channels as selections within the filter UI, as you can in Lens Blur, or in the Extract filter of yore; this would give you a chance to quickly experiment with various selections (for instance, with varying hardness)
- it is yet another kind of filter interface, how many are there now in Photoshop
- Blur Gallery is not at all integrated with Lens Blur or with the 3D functions
- you cannot really define distance; Lens Blur – looking at gray values in the alpha channel – allows more precicion
- you cannot simulate various aperture styles, as you can in Lens Blur
- if you did a selection, you cannot invert the selection inside the filter UI

Comment edited 9 minutes after posting
1 upvote
h2k
By h2k (Mar 30, 2012)

What i criticise in this article:
- The flower example confuses, as the original photo already contains a lot of bokeh.
- not mentioned that bokeh circles are really only achievable in high highlights against very dark surroundings, as in the night shot used to demonstrate
- not demonstrated visually the interesting (but too weak) selection bleed, because she doesn't like selections
- not discussed how to combine various Blur Gallery filters on the same file and layer in one instance

Realistic un-nauseating digital blurs are – if at all – only possible if you do a selection first to exclude the main focal subject (much better than shuffling needles and pins, the dog and kite picture proves this easily). Actually this blur gallery seems more an item for Photoshop Elements than for the more serious CS6 crowd.

Comment edited 9 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
iaredatsun
By iaredatsun (Mar 30, 2012)

Of course this could be done before but this makes it easier and these narrow depth-of-field effects will move from being a usp special effect used by photographers and art directors with large sensor cameras to becoming more ubiquitous. It will eventually become normalised, invisible and less desirable as an art effect.

1 upvote
Shiranai
By Shiranai (Mar 30, 2012)

Nothing really new here. You can archive the same or even better with a mask and Filter > Lens Blur. So what they basically did is only adding a new interface...

Comment edited 29 seconds after posting
2 upvotes
nofumble
By nofumble (Mar 30, 2012)

I want this iPad apps ASAP to make DSLR people envy.

0 upvotes
CaseyComo
By CaseyComo (Mar 30, 2012)

You deserve that app. You really do.

1 upvote
dholl
By dholl (Mar 30, 2012)

ipadders are a cult. They even claim the video is superior to Canon 5D Mark III

4 upvotes
SamTruax
By SamTruax (Mar 30, 2012)

Actually its the iPhone 4S that has the great video. It's not a 5D Mk III but if you look at the comparisons on YouTube and Vimeo you will see that the quality of the output is very similar...just don't expect to pull focus or get decent image stabilization.

0 upvotes
CaseyComo
By CaseyComo (Mar 30, 2012)

Or, you could just learn to shoot. That works, too.

4 upvotes
DVT80111
By DVT80111 (Mar 30, 2012)

This is cool. I have used CS4 to make blurry background with old cheap kit lens before. I had tough time at the edges, also time consuming. This new feature in CS6 will make life much easier. Guess what, my upgrade plan to FF is on hold right now.

1 upvote
CaseyComo
By CaseyComo (Mar 30, 2012)

FF? Your kit lens will blur the background if you use it right.

0 upvotes
DVT80111
By DVT80111 (Mar 30, 2012)

I guess you guy are in denial. Some call this cheating but you know what. The raw signal from your sensor does not look anything like a picture. It is a result of digital signal processing anyway.

0 upvotes
CaseyComo
By CaseyComo (Mar 30, 2012)

In denial of what?

0 upvotes
dholl
By dholl (Mar 30, 2012)

Casey, I think he's trying to say you're in denial of the world and everything in it being made up of tiny atoms.

I don't know why he's saying that, but that does seem to be what he means.

1 upvote
ManuelVilardeMacedo
By ManuelVilardeMacedo (Apr 7, 2012)

Casey: being in denial is when an egyptian jumps from his boat into the water and says: 'I'm in the Nile, I'm in the Nile'.

0 upvotes
samhain
By samhain (Mar 30, 2012)

Its like cheating for those with slow lenses. Lame.

4 upvotes
Michael Ma
By Michael Ma (Mar 30, 2012)

I don't doubt with A LOT effort, you can pull this off with pho blur. Maybe mask based on content aware selections and isolated color selects. And then flip the selection and do a dual gradient mask on the floor.

But it is the quintessential example of "putting perfume on a pig." The fact that you shot the photo this way probably means it came off something like a smart phone or you snapped a pic with your camera with no regard or care. And the outcome you are trying to go for is something frame-worthy. You cannot start with a mediocre photograph when you are trying to achieve something great. The effort required is far more greater than the second of forethought of bringing a capable camera or shooting with the right settings. The fake blur results will never surpass the results you would have gotten if you had taken the shot right the first time.

3 upvotes
steveh0607
By steveh0607 (Mar 30, 2012)

I agree. Adobe put it in CS6 because they could. Shooting aperture priority and thinking a bit first instead of clicking away makes a better photographer.

1 upvote
filmluvr
By filmluvr (Mar 29, 2012)

It's just a toy. No one who shoots a lot has time for this.

4 upvotes
thx1138
By thx1138 (Mar 29, 2012)

I can see the arguments now about never needing fast glass again. Smart blur filters and extreme high ISO performance of cameras, heck we will get away with f/8 lenses at this rate.

The devil is in the details, let's see how it handles fly away hair around a person for example. Artificial bokeh is a huge research area and it's incredibly hard problem to crack, to handle very fine details without obliterating them.

I can see a use for this though and I just think of it as another tool for those times you just couldn't take the shot you wanted in camera.

1 upvote
Nishi Drew
By Nishi Drew (Mar 29, 2012)

The blurred dog pic actually draws my attention away from the dog and to the odd blur that looks like it was blatantly smudged on the left.

4 upvotes
Henry M. Hertz
By Henry M. Hertz (Mar 29, 2012)

fake blur it may work for simple portraits.
i use that myself and bought alienskin bokeh 2.

but i expect we will see a huge amount of bad made tilt-shift and other physical incorrect "small dof images" on flickr in the future.

tilt-shift is not easy to fake... i mean GOOD tilt-shift.
it is more to it then creating a blur gradient.
you need to create a depth map for good tilt-shift and i don´t need pins to create a depth map... i can paint that.

but most people do it the easy way and it is easy to spot that it is fake.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 5 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Mtsuoka
By Mtsuoka (Mar 29, 2012)

people don't use TS lens for blur only

0 upvotes
JohnBee
By JohnBee (Mar 30, 2012)

Here are a few examples of some fake TS output:

http://www.daviddanielsphotography.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/tilt-shift-california-2.jpg

http://www.alienskin.com/bokeh/images/tutorials/Triomphe_After.jpg

http://twistedsifter.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/using-tilt-shift-photography-technique.jpg

http://twistedsifter.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/tilt-shift-shot.jpg

TBH. of all the software bokeh solution out there, I think the tilt-shift method may result in some of the best output.

0 upvotes
KodaChrome25
By KodaChrome25 (Apr 7, 2012)

Wow Johnbee. These are all pretty ugly. They all look like miniature models, all poorly lit and shot.

Some things cannot be un-seen unfortunately.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Andkar 666
By Andkar 666 (Mar 29, 2012)

i can actually se the day when young people today, think artefisial bokeh looks better and are more "realistic" than the one from the camera.

2 upvotes
ManuelVilardeMacedo
By ManuelVilardeMacedo (Mar 29, 2012)

'Artefisial'...?

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
6fingers
By 6fingers (Mar 30, 2012)

containing artefacts :)

2 upvotes
Barend
By Barend (Mar 29, 2012)

Guess what kind of blur is this: Lens, software or even both?
http://www.pictureplaza.nl/barend/images/734d1bcf4951.jpg

1 upvote
CaseyComo
By CaseyComo (Mar 30, 2012)

Software.

0 upvotes
Barend
By Barend (Mar 30, 2012)

85mm @ F1.4 thats all.

0 upvotes
CaseyComo
By CaseyComo (Mar 30, 2012)

I was confused by the blurred area's seeming hrizontal/vertical differences...i.e., it's not round. Maybe it's the angle of his head.

0 upvotes
ballepalle
By ballepalle (Mar 29, 2012)

Seriously, Tilt-Shift...is there anything that is easier to do in Photoshop already without any pre-enginerred filter? yeez...

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
happypoppeye
By happypoppeye (Mar 29, 2012)

Heck ...I'm still using PSE version 1 ...but with a cheap fast prime I can still do better than CS6

0 upvotes
Parsek
By Parsek (Mar 29, 2012)

Not impressed with any kind of software blur I have seen so far. Come on programmers, you can do better than that!

1 upvote
micahmedia
By micahmedia (Mar 29, 2012)

I can absolutely see how this could be employed to get realistic results. However, the last pic of the dog and kite are anything but realistic, and are certainly the cause of a lot of the "SOFTWARE WILL NEVAR DO ITTT!!!" comments. Of course software will get there--it's inevitable. But in an easy automatic way is still not here yet. It's that simple.

1 upvote
onlooker
By onlooker (Mar 29, 2012)

Rubenski wrote:
> Post processing this will always look fake because you miss the graduality of shooting wide open.

Wrong. These tools (that have been available in many forms for ages in Photoshop and other packages) require patience and a lot of work. Set up different distance masks (very carefully and patiently) and increase blur progressively. That way you will have graduality. Yes, it is possible, and no, it is not a "quick fix".

> these kind of tools are only made for the big crowd that will never make a really good picture anyway.

Such arrogance rarely indicates greatness, so I looked at your site. You should not be throwing stones at others.

7 upvotes
Guidenet
By Guidenet (Mar 29, 2012)

I would suggest people never put down another's gallery or images as part of an argument. It's distasteful and you will lose most people who would otherwise agree with you. Other people's work is off limits in an argument.

4 upvotes
Rubenski
By Rubenski (Mar 29, 2012)

Dear Onlooker: In general a good photographer does NOT want to spend hours in PS. Everything you can do IN camera better do it IN camera. Hey, I'm just an amateur trying to apply the rules of the pro's and I've got no problem if people comment my work, positive or negative. I love my hobby and I think these examples in the article are crappy, sorry, but I mean it.

4 upvotes
onlooker
By onlooker (Mar 29, 2012)

Rubenski wrote:
> In general a good photographer does NOT want to spend hours in PS

Are you serious?

> Everything you can do IN camera better

I don't even know how to respond. So you're saying that in camera post-processing is better than anything one can do himself in LR or PS? I am dumbfounded, to be honest. I don't think we have enough common ground to argue this any further.

1 upvote
Rubenski
By Rubenski (Mar 29, 2012)

Why should I spend hours in PS if I can simply select the right settings and take the picture in the style I want it in just a few seconds? Every book I've read says exactly the same and I think it makes sense. You don't. It's your right. You like to spend hours in PS, that's fine, it's your time. This is not an argument to me, it's sharing ideas and thoughts, don't be mad Onlooker, no offence meant.

1 upvote
ManuelVilardeMacedo
By ManuelVilardeMacedo (Mar 29, 2012)

Onlooker: «So you're saying that in camera post-processing is better than anything one can do himself in LR or PS?» You completely misunderstood what Rubenski meant! He meant getting the picture right BEFORE pressing the shutter button by using the right exposure settings. And I concur.

0 upvotes
onlooker
By onlooker (Mar 30, 2012)

> He meant getting the picture right BEFORE pressing the shutter button by using the right exposure settings.

No, he said:

"a good photographer does NOT want to spend hours in PS"

and:

"Everything you can do IN camera better"

and:

"Why should I spend hours in PS if I can simply select the right settings and take the picture in the style I want it in just a few seconds?"

Please read those once again. He is talking about in-camera post-processing (instead of LR or PS). Not once was exposure mentioned in this subthread. Because he disdains post-processing, he decides that no good photographer would do it. I don't mind his personal dislike for post, it's his business, but I mind his rationalizing it with arrogant statements like the one I quoted at the beginning of this subthread.

1 upvote
BBViet
By BBViet (Mar 30, 2012)

Nice selective quoting there. The full quote should be

"Everything you can do IN camera better do it IN camera."

I read it as: everything that can be done in camera should be done in camera.

0 upvotes
onlooker
By onlooker (Mar 30, 2012)

To be honest, I am not much into sloppy punctuation, so when I spliced that sentence I did not do it out of malice. I did it because without a comma it made no sense to me after "better". The rest of the quoted comments still stand.

Besides, I still do not agree even with this one. Just because camera offers me some inane picture styles (read all his quotes), it does not mean it is better to do it in camera than in post-processing.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
ManuelVilardeMacedo
By ManuelVilardeMacedo (Mar 30, 2012)

Onlooker, you're not a true photographer.

0 upvotes
onlooker
By onlooker (Mar 31, 2012)

ManuelVilardeMacedo, I am heart broken.

(where is that sarcasm emoticon?)

0 upvotes
Dvlee
By Dvlee (Mar 31, 2012)

To me doing something 'in camera' does not mean doing in camera digital processing of the raw images into stylized jpegs. To me its doing things like setting fstop, shutter speeds etc, selection of lens/zoom focal length, point of focus/hyperfocal point and depth of field,

The traditional meaning of 'in camera' also included lighting and external special fx. The point is the special effect is created at the time the exposure is taken.

I consider the built in special effects to be post processing even though they take place in the camera.

So instead of thinking of it as "in camera" perhaps it would be better to describe it as "RAW capture effects."

But Rubinski was spot on in one regard; I would rather be spending my time with camera in hand taking pictures than sitting in front of the computer doing post. I feel a greater sense of accomplishment when I get the effect I'm looking for at the moment of capture. I never use built in processing FX.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
ManuelVilardeMacedo
By ManuelVilardeMacedo (Apr 7, 2012)

Everybody understood what Rubenski meant except onlooker, who clung to silly rhethorics to try to justify his lack of comprehension.

0 upvotes
dstarr3
By dstarr3 (Mar 29, 2012)

Can you adjust how many "blades" the simulated bokeh has? There are precious few lenses that produce genuinely round "orbs." Not to mention, the shape squashes a bit by the further from the center of the frame they are.

I'd still rather spend the cash on a fast prime and an ND filter. Better to create than to edit.

0 upvotes
Amadou Diallo
By Amadou Diallo (Mar 29, 2012)

Currently, there is no control in the Blur Gallery over bokeh shape to mimic various aperture blade designs

0 upvotes
JohnBee
By JohnBee (Mar 30, 2012)

I don't think PS6 has this, though other plugins do.
I've cases where software output that matched some of the best lenses money can buy which I think can open-up some amazing possibilities. ie. many lenses suffer when shot wide open, and so with software, it becomes possible to shoot for maximum IQ and add DOF afterward thus resulting in a much higher IQ image than made possible by optics alone. I've found this to be especially true when aiming for that 3D look.

0 upvotes
citizenlouie
By citizenlouie (Mar 29, 2012)

I wonder what's the point of using larger aperture to achieve DoF. Probably FF will eventually phase out....

0 upvotes
Henry M. Hertz
By Henry M. Hertz (Mar 29, 2012)

only if people become retarded and do not recognize how fake and ugly the software dof looks.

2 upvotes
JohnBee
By JohnBee (Mar 30, 2012)

Sometimes it is virtually impossible to accomplish proper DOF with images. I've found this to be the case when compositions made-up of multiple planes which make DOF emulation extremely difficult if not impossible to accomplish.

0 upvotes
citizenlouie
By citizenlouie (Mar 31, 2012)

I was being sarcastic. You can already do this with photoshop but you need to shoot two photos. One with the background completely out of focus and another with the foreground in sharp focus and merge two photos. It's a big hassle. For action shot like the dog, it probably is not that easy (but not undoable). This looks like an "automate" function. For macro, we can already do extended DoF by merge/stack several shots. Software solution for shallow DoF probably be inferior (actually all software solution is inferior than optical), but depends on what your needs and your threshold for quality, it can be helpful sometimes, if you don't mind compromise.

Comment edited 41 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Roland Karlsson
By Roland Karlsson (Mar 29, 2012)

The flower is OK. The dog just looks weird.

1 upvote
HBoss26
By HBoss26 (Apr 1, 2012)

I Agree! somehow the samples did not gave total justice with this new shortcut but not new technique. the thread or rope of the kite behind the dog should have made it blur as well and below shoulder on the right edge of the dog was overly affected.

but! great presentation it shows the fast way processing and so its limitations.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
love_them_all
By love_them_all (Mar 29, 2012)

Still too good to be true. The bokeh looks artificial. One can spend an hour on blurring the image and still not able to get something close to the real thing.

3 upvotes
Paullubbock
By Paullubbock (Mar 29, 2012)

looks like it would have been easier to smart copy the dog and kite on a second layer, smart blur the bottom layer and lay your dog back down with some minor touchup.

1 upvote
Total comments: 168
12