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Step by step: MASTER DEPTH OF FIELD

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Maximise the depth The trick is not to focus on either the foreground or the background. If you focus on the foreground, the background will go out of focus, and if you focus on a detail in the background, the foreground will be blurred. To make both come out sharp, you need to focus between them.

Choose your focus point There are two ways to do this. One is to leave the camera set to autofocus, but manually position the focus point. You may find it easier to switch to Live View and use the multi-selector to place the focus point where you want it – it should be a third of the way up the frame.

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Set your lens For this you need a lens with a distance scale. Our 18-55mm kit lens didn’t, but most others do. Use your judgement if the markings are far apart – depth-offield calculations make it sound like a precise science, but the sharpness falls away slowly, so you don’t have to be too precise.

Check the figures Or you can switch to manual focus and use an app like Field Tools to work out the ‘hyperfocal distance’. This places distant objects at the far limit of depth of field, and so maximises depth of field. At a focal length of 55mm and aperture of f/16, our app says we need to focus at 9.5m…

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TOP TIP Hyperfocal distance tables

To use these tables look up the aperture and focal length you are using for your type of camera. This will tell you the distance to focus at (the hyperfocal distance) to get as much of the foreground in focus as well as the horizon (infinity), and the depth of field range you’ll get. You can download a PDF copy of them from http://bit.ly/1oWsHqf, which you can print out at home or carry on your smartphone.

Photography Week Issue 100  

Photography Week, the world's best-selling digital photography magazine, has been given a makeover, and to celebrate we're giving away a fre...

Photography Week Issue 100  

Photography Week, the world's best-selling digital photography magazine, has been given a makeover, and to celebrate we're giving away a fre...