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We reviewed three of the more popular 'pocket printers,' the Canon Ivy, Fujifilm Instax Share and Polaroid ZIP. Here's the one we recommend...
The Iris Blur filter offers comprehensive onscreen controls for designating both the location and intensity of the blur effect. Upon first glance, the controls may appear rather simplistic. After just a bit of exploration, however, you come to realize they are quite powerful and flexible. I’ve labeled the filter's various controls in the example below.
|The outer boundaries of the ellipse define the start of the transition between the area to be blurred and the area to be protected. The feather handles define the actual portion of the image that is to protected, remaining in sharp focus. The ellipse and feather handles can be adjusted independently.|
As with the Field Blur filter, you control the intensity of blur by dragging on the adjustment ring or by moving the Blur slider located in the right panel. Once activated, the Iris Blur filter automatically sets a pin in the center of the image.
The primary control point is the ellipse surrounding the pin. The area outside the boundaries of the ellipse will be blurred at full strength. There are four Ellipse Handles (small squares) along the ellipse as well as a larger Roundness Knob. Click on a handle and drag to alter the height or width of the ellipse. Click and drag on the Roundness Knob to change the corner shape of the ellipse from an oval (shown above) to a rounded rectangle (shown below).
|Here I dragged the Roundness Knob to change the shape of the ellipse to a rounded rectangle. Hovering the cursor alongside an Ellipse Handle and dragging will rotate and/or resize the ellipse. Clicking and dragging inside the ellipse repositions the entire control unit.|
The Feather Handles encompass the area to remain completely protected from the blur adjustment. They also define the scope of the transition gradient between the protected area and that with a partially applied blur. The further away these handles sit from the edge of the ellipse, the more gradual (and seamless) the blur transition. Click and drag on any single Feather Handle to move all of them as a unit. You can adjust a single Feather Handle by holding the Option/Alt key as you click and drag.
Confused? Don't be. This behavior is much harder to explain to to actually use. The easiest way to start is to simply move these handles right to the edge of the portion of the image that should remain in focus. Make even minor adjustments to the Feather Handles and you will see the transition from partially blurred to non-blurred areas update.
|Here's the original file. Even though it was shot wide open, the background remains distracting.||Using Iris Blur I was able to soften the background while keeping the subject in focus.|
The Tilt-Shift filter emulates the optical effects of extreme perspective control lenses, like those made by LensBaby. When you first open the filter an adjustment ring is placed at the center of the image with a set of horizontal lines appearing on either side of it (see below).
|The filter opens with a pin in the center of the image.||Here I have moved the entire control unit down and adjusted repositioned the dashed lines. The bottom dashed line now sits below the image area, as indicated by the truncated set of dashes (circled in red).|
The dashed lines establish the boundary between completely blurred portions of the image and the start of a transition to the protected image area which sits inside the solid lines. The simplest way to think of this is that the portion of the image to be protected from the blur must reside within the solid lines.
You can move the entire control unit by clicking and dragging on the pin. You can also move the dashed and solid lines independently by clicking and dragging on any of them. Although the filter opens with a horizontal tilt adjustment, you can rotate the entire control unit by clicking and dragging just outside the small circle located in the middle of either solid line. As is common in Photoshop, you can constrain your rotation by holding the Shift key as you drag. A 'rich cursor' display (new to CS6) will appear indicating the current angle of rotation. As with the previous filters, you control the intensity of the blur by dragging either the adjustment ring or by moving the Blur slider in the right panel.
The panel on the right side of the interface includes a Distortion slider, which by default is set to 0%. Moving the slider in either direction will add a motion blur effect to the area that by default would be the foreground in a horizontal image. Note that if the control unit is rotated 90 degrees clockwise then this 'foreground' area will then sit on right. The Symmetric Distortion check-box causes this distortion to be applied to both sides of the blur effect.
|Moving the Distortion Slider adds a motion effect to the blur and bokeh, as you can see in the top portion of the image. The direction of the motion is linked to the direction that you move the slider.|
We've now looked at the main features of each filter. But there is a second Bokeh Effects panel sitting underneath the blur filters. We'll take a look at its options on the following page.
Following testing of the Panasonic Lumix DC-LX100 II, we've added it to our Pocketable Enthusiast Compact Cameras buying guide as joint-winner, alongside Sony's Cyber-shot RX100 VA.
If you're looking for a high-quality camera, you don't need to spend a ton of cash, nor do you need to buy the latest and greatest new product on the market. In our latest buying guide we've selected some cameras that while they're a bit older, still offer a lot of bang for the buck.
What's the best camera for under $500? These entry level cameras should be easy to use, offer good image quality and easily connect with a smartphone for sharing. In this buying guide we've rounded up all the current interchangeable lens cameras costing less than $500 and recommended the best.
Whether you've grown tired of what came with your DSLR, or want to start photographing different subjects, a new lens is probably in order. We've selected our favorite lenses for Sony mirrorlses cameras in several categories to make your decisions easier.
|The sights this window has seen! by NPW UK|
from Creative Window
|Tacking Point Light House by photoman555|
from Nikon Challenge
George Mendonsa, the gentleman kissing a woman believed to be Greta Zimmer Friedman in Alfred Eisenstaedt's iconic image titled 'V-J Day in Times Square,' has passed away at the age of 95.
Want to know more about the Canon EOS RP? We conducted a live Q&A that you can watch here. We'll be trying to address those comments we didn't get to in the comments.
Version 3.0.2 of Skylum's Luminar software has been improved for both Windows and macOS systems.
Until now, the word 'bokeh' has been a noun. But that may very well change with the help of Apple's recent video advertisement.
The EF-M 32mm F1.4 is a welcome addition to Canon's APS-C mirrorless lens lineup. It's a good performer all-around and enjoyable to use on the EOS M50, and we hope to see more like it introduced to the EF-M range.
The data breach we reported on last week did not only affect 500px but a total of 16 websites, including mobile image sharing platform EyeEm, Animoto, Artsy and Fotolog.
Camera Rescue, a Finnish organization determined to rescue more than 100K analog, has already saved 46,000 cameras and plans to more than double that number by 2020.
Independent lens manufacturer Sigma has announced that its new 28mm T1.5 cine lens for full frame sensor cameras will be available from the middle of March.
Panasonic has announced the impending release of two new cameras, the ZS80/TZ95 compact camera and the FZ1000 II superzoom camera.
At Dubai's recent Gulf Photo Plus event, Fujifilm showed off several of its early concept mockups for GFX cameras that (sadly) never made it into production. We took a closer look.
Panasonic is well known for including impressive video features on its cameras. In this article, professional cinematographer Jack Lam explains one killer feature the company could add to its S series that would shake up the industry – and it all comes down to manual focus.
Lens manufacturer Irix has announced it's expanding its product lineup into the Japanese market.
Full-frame cameras get a lot of attention lately, but Technical Editor Richard Butler thinks that APS-C makes the most sense for a lot of people – and there's just one company consistently giving the format the support it deserves.
The 12th International Garden Photographer of the Year winners have been announced. We've gathered the top photos from each category and rounded them up into a slideshow.
Kosmo Foto has announced the release and opened pre-orders for its new Mono 120 black-and-white film.
Uber software engineer Phillip Wang has created a website that shows a portrait of a person that doesn't actually exist by using AI to merge multiple faces together.
The Atomos Shinobi is a compact, lightweight monitor that features the same display found inside the much more expensive Ninja 5 monitor/recorder.
Got a couple of minutes? Then you have all the time you need to learn about Canon's second full-frame mirrorless camera body – and why it's a compelling option for someone stepping into full-frame for the first time.
NASA's Curiosity rover captures a 360 panorama from its Vera Rubin Ridge 'Rock Hall' drill site before moving on to greener...er...redder pastures.
Xiaomi's new flagship Android smartphone is expected to be launched on February 24 at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
A quick glance at the spec sheet doesn't make the Canon EOS RP look that exciting. But having shot with it, we've become oddly fond of this little full framer.
Pixelmator Pro has received an update with new and improved features, including support for Portrait Masks with images captured by the iPhone's Portrait Mode.
Alongside the EOS RP, Canon showed us mockups of the six lenses it says are in development for 2019. There's a distinct high-end flavor to the options in the works.
The new X-T30 may not be Fujifilm's flagship model, but it arrives with some very impressive features and specifications. Chris and Jordan have been shooting it for a few days and share their first impressions, along with a look at an iconic new building in their hometown of Calgary.
We don't often get excited about $900 cameras, but the Fujifilm X-T30 has really impressed us thus far. Find out what's new, what it's like to use and how it compares to its peers in our review in progress.
The Fujifilm X-T30 is equipped with the same 26.1MP X-Trans sensor and X-Processor 4 Quad Core CPU as the X-T3, along with some autofocus improvements. The new camera arrives in March for $900 body-only.
Fujifilm's new XF 16mm F2.8 R WR is a compact, weather-resistant lens that weighs just 155g/5.5oz. It'll be available starting in March for $399.
Fujifilm's XF 16mm F2.8 is one of the widest lenses in the company's lineup of compact primes for its X-series interchangeable lens cameras. We've been up and down the streets of snowy Seattle - a rare sight - to see just what our pre-production copy of this petite prime is capable of.
Firmware version 2.00 brings two new shooting modes and one new setting to its X-T100 and X-A5 camera systems.
Fujifilm has announced its upcoming rugged point-and-shoot, the FinePix XP140.