校园英语·中旬 2018年5期


In the module of Applied Photography, several impressive photography terms have been come out, such as RED eye disambiguation, flash synchronization, etc.

We also discussed a lot of camera techniques, such as the macro photography, street photography, fashion photography, social documentary photography and high-speed photography. During the process of photography, there is one particular technique attract researchers attention regarding several photography skills, which is Bokeh light effects.

Therefore, this essay will mainly deal with the concept of Bokeh and the approaches to creating good Bokeh light effects. This article will concentrate on the Bokeh effect in the photography industry; it mainly provides necessary information and different methods to produce excellent Bokeh photography.

The key methods of Bokeh will be involved in the following paragraphs. Also, we will relate Bokeh light effects into our workshop experience and see the influence of our pictures. Moreover, the difficulties of filming Bokeh effects will be analysed in refer to the workshops. In the following paragraph, some stunning Bokeh photograph examples and several Bokeh Photography artists will be mentioned. Finally, the conclusion will conclude all the major approaches of Bokeh and the influence of Bokeh light effect during the process of photography.


“Bokeh is the quality of the portion of a photograph that is not in sharp focus (Harmer, 2010)”. The word Bokeh was origin from Japanese means ‘blur or ‘haze in English. The reason this essay aims at Bokeh photography is that Bokeh photography can give people a new view of our familiar world. For instance, the appendix picture ‘Bokehlicious NY Streets from photographer DeaPeaJay shows a different New York Street compare with the standard image. “DeaPeaJay expertly handles the balance between the tree in the foreground with the lights of New York behind, achieving just the right level of focus and blur” (Adam, 2010).

Basically, Bokeh is rendered by the lens, it appears to let audience concentrate on a particular area of the image, and at the same times keep the focal region outside. The reason Bokeh picture is hard to capture is that photographer has to find the subject in a short focal distance (Renfrey, 2014).

There are vast differences between good Bokeh and bad Bokeh. A good Bokehs background have soft blur with smooth round circles of light, which create a natural and comfortable atmosphere of the picture. For instance, the appendix ‘Bokeh Snow Tree from Pink Sherbet not only provides a gorgeous view of blurred snowflake and tree but also create a winter atmosphere in the whole picture.

On the other hand, the bad Bokeh may be hard to define, but sometimes people can see a bad Bokeh as a terrible picture. Bad Bokeh tends to be with sharp edges of circles and unpleasant quality of the blur (Mansurov, 2009).


One of the most significant reason to conduct research related to Bokeh is the researcher accidently captured a picture with a faint halo during the workshop in Applied Photography module (See Appendix 3 Halo). Although the whole picture does not have Bokeh effect, it leads researcher into a new subject in photography.

During the process of conducting this topic, there are three key ways to achieve good Bokeh according to Annie Tao, whos a Professional Lifestyle Photographer in the San Francisco. At first, in order to create nice Bokeh, the right lens is extremely crucial, Annie found the greatest Bokeh is often from “prime lenses with large apertures, such as f/2.8 and f/1.8” (Tao, 2013). By using the faster lens, it could create great Bokeh effect when people are shooting photographs (See Appendix 4). The second approach is to select a large aperture; the larger aperture can narrow the depth of field that create visible Bokeh in the shooting (Tao, 2013). Third, enlarge the distance between the background and the subject, it would create better Bokeh (Tao, 2013).

On the other hand, there are some other aspects we should pay attention to, such as the minimum focusing distance (MFD). The Photographer Jason D. Little said, “Every lens has the minimum focusing distance…the concept of getting close to your subject while blurring the background is maximised in macro lenses (Little, 2013). ” He also thinks it would be a terrible idea if people overcompensate the picture. Bokeh should be used after people found the subject and established good position (Little, 2013).

My favourite photographer is Takashi Kitajima, who is a professional photographer and engineer from Japan. His photographs contain a lot of Bokeh effect; he prefers to deliberately not focus light in the photos, which make pictures stunning and colourful. From his series of ‘Extra Bokeh, he creates a lot of photos with remarkable Bokeh effect, such as the Roadside Tree, Shadow of the Loneliness, Blow out the Candles.

Although we did not use the Bokeh light effects in the workshops, there are several places where are suitable for taking Bokeh light effects. For instance, in street photography, we went to the City Centre took a lot of pictures contains magnificent street view. At night in the city centre, there are a lot of Christmas Lights around the street, which makes the perfect background for taking Christmas Bokeh picture. Such as Appendix 5, the Christmas lights is the background of the picture, and the subject is a star accessory may from Christmas tree. Although we did not take the image at night during workshops, it would be a good idea if we go outside take pictures related to Bokeh when the lights on.

About the difficulties of taking a picture with Bokeh, it would be hard to select an appropriate subject, at first, the background of the photo also hard to choose because there should be a contrast between the subject and background. Such as Appendix 2, the subject is the greyish tree, the background is white snow and dark sky. The strong contrast between white snow and grey tree make the whole picture looks attractive and graceful. Another obstacle to taking Bokeh picture is adjusting the lens, to deal with this problem, we might take pictures by using the different lens in the photography. From my perspective, the angle of the photo also influences the effect of Bokeh, thus, we should try different angles as much as we can.


With the development of technology and photography industry, the Bokeh photography is becoming more and more popular photography technique regarding different photography skills. Due to its large impact, photographers tends to seek some special ways to create Bokeh picture, either by using Photoshop create visible Bokeh image or artificially controlled the percentage of Bokeh. Those phenomena show the Bokeh is one of the biggest parts in the photography industry.

In conclusion, this essay focuses on Bokeh concept in photography, we discussed the definition of Bokeh light effect at first. Then we talked about approaches to creating Bokeh effects. At first, we can create Bokeh effects by using the large aperture. Second, using fast lens can make more visible Bokeh effect in photography. Third, adjust an appropriate distance between subject and background is very significant for Bokeh photography. After discussed the approaches, we mentioned the workshop experience in relating to Bokeh pictures, such as street photography workshop and winter garden workshop. Also, the photographer Takashi Kitajima was mentioned in the essay. Moreover, we made some suggestions about where might be the suitable place to conduct Bokeh photography. Finally, we perform several difficulties of conduction Bokeh photography and made suggestions about those obstacles.


[1]Adam,J.(2010)Beautiful Examples od Bokeh at:

[2]Harmer,J.(2010)How to Achieve Better Bokeh-4Simple Tips.Digital Photography School.

[3]Accessed at:

[4]Littele,J.(2013)6 Tips for Mastering Bokeh.Light

[5]Accessed at:

[6]Mansurov,N.(2009)What is Bokeh? Photography Life.

[7]Accessed at:


[9]Accessed at:

[10]Tao,A.(2013)How To Achieve Nice Bokeh.Digital Photography School.

[11]Accessed at:



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