Depth of field is a key element in many photographs. In most cases, using it can mean the difference between a basic image and a work of art. There are two common types of depth of field, each with the potential to increase the aesthetics of your image dramatically.
We'll get to that shortly, but first:
In any image, there is a zone that appears sharp and in focus. That region is referred to as the depth of field (DoF). DoF allows you to determine the areas you want to focus on in your image. You can either draw a viewer's attention to or away from certain areas within the image.
There are two common types of depth of field; shallow depth of field and deep depth of field. Both types bring out different aspects in your image and, therefore, have different benefits.
In shallow depth of field, the distance between the nearest and the furthest elements in focus is very short. This puts only a small portion of your image in focus. You can achieve a shallow DoF by using a large aperture.
That being said, you should remember that using a large aperture puts your image at risk of overexposure. So, to avoid this, try using a fast shutter speed and low ISO.
In deep depth of field (also known as large depth of field), both the background and foreground are sharp and clear. The viewer can also see all the details in the frame. This can make it quite challenging to create a well-balanced composition, but with proper graphics design software like CorelDraw, you can bring the image to life.
You can achieve a deep DoF by setting the aperture to f/16 or lower. And, if you want to make your image even clearer, try placing the camera as far away from the image as possible.
In shallow DoF, only a small part of your image is visible. Viewers are inherently attracted to the area in focus and will ignore everything else, thus making the subject of the image stand out. This technique is especially suitable for taking commercial photographs since the subject of the ad gets all the attention.
Other benefits of shallow depth of view include:
Sometimes you get such awesome scenery that you want everything to be in focus in your image. Say, for example, you're taking pictures of a landscape, an architectural scene, or even a simple family photo, you want everything to be seen in order to give your image more context, and that's what you get with deep DoF.
Other benefits of deep DoF include:
Using the proper depth of field can go a long way in creating the perfect image for that ad or website icon you're designing. But, to get more fulfilling results, you'll need to combine your expertise with an efficient graphics design software like CorelDRAW.
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