SUBMIT: Your Best Bokeh Photo by November 7th. WIN: 21-Piece Bokeh Kit [Closed]

Your Best Bokeh Photo by November 7th. WIN: 21-Piece Bokeh Kit [Closed]

Giveaway Tuesdays has officially ended! But don't sweat it, WonderHowTo has another World that's taken its place. Every Tuesday, Phone Snap! invites you to show off your cell phone photography skills.

Submit your best shot to our weekly competition for a chance to win an awesome prize. Phoneographers only—both Android and iPhone welcome! Check it out now.

This week's Giveaway Tuesdays Photo Challenge requires you to get a little blurry. We're looking for your best bokeh shot, whether you're a bokeh veteran or new to the art. Bokeh, which translates to "blurred" in Japanese, is the practice of creating dreamy, out-of-focus compositions by manipulating light through a shallow depth of field. This process often results in select areas of focus, while the rest of the image appears soft and blurred. The blurred area is what is referred to as the "bokeh effect".

To learn more about the effect, see lengthy explanations here and here—but for the sake of this challenge, we're going to present several relatively simple How-To's for creating your own bokeh images at home. Check the corkboard throughout the week for quick tips and tutorials.

Here is a very basic bokeh photograph:

The scrabble tiles are in focus, while the blurred background represents the bokeh effect.

Once you've mastered the basics, you can opt to use a filter to create "stenciled" shapes with the blurred light, furthering the effect:

Again, the blurred background represents the bokeh effect, but this time a filter "stencils" heart shapes into the light.

Which brings us to the prize...

ENTER TO WIN

The Bokeh Masters Kit includes 21 different pop out shapes, plus 8 extra blank discs to come up with your own designs. The readymade stencils include the following: an airplane, a star, a heart, a dolphin, a bird, a paw print, a happy face, a sad face, an envelope, a butterfly, a check symbol, a movie camera, a biohazard symbol, headphones, a football player, a fleur de lis, a walking man, a recycling symbol, a mouse cursor, and a manatee.

The kit works with film and digital SLR cameras, and is optimized for lenses sized 62mm and under. Tests show that the kit works best with the following lenses, (though it may also work with other wide-aperture lenses of similar thread size):

Set up is easy; simply pop out your filter, fold as instructed, and secure over your lens with a rubber band. The filter will hold each bokeh shape in place:

More details here.

Tips

  • You'll get the best results with a shallow depth of field, so shoot at a 2.8 aperture or wider.
  • Cell phone apps are permitted! Check out Bokeh Booth for iPhone.
  • You can make your own bokeh filter kit—check the corkboard for tutorials throughout the week.

HERE'S WHAT YOU DO

  1. Follow WonderHowTo on Twitter.
  2. Post your best bokeh shot to the Giveaway Tuesdays Corkboard. That's ONE photo per person, and the photo MUST be taken by you. No stealing.
  3. We will select and announce one winner at 8:30 am PST on Tuesday, November 8th.

All entries must be in by Monday, November 7th, 11:59pm PST. Standard rules apply. Post any questions below.

6 Comments

I desperately need help. I made a hood to go over the lens, just like all of the tutorials. But when I put it on, it does absolutely nothing! I am so confused...

hmm. are you setting the aperture correctly?

Yes, the lowest my camera has is 1/4000, and the tutorials say the lowest. I'm still not sure how it works though...

hi i'm new to all of this but i would like to enter for this contest. how do i know if i met all the requirements to be applicable to enter? i created a profile on wonderhowto but what else do i need to enter?

Hi Zoe, I'm sorry to respond too late to your question. Hopefully you'll enter this week's challenge! All of the requirements are listed above. Simply post your photo to the corkboard to enter! Message me if you have any other questions.

The filters look just like cookie gun disks. Hmmm, I wonder....

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