Monday, February 2, 2009

Lens Baby Effect

What is a “lens baby effect” or also called “Diana effect”?

Well, this effect produces a ‘sweet spot’ where the focus is sharp and everything around it is soft and blurry.

There are actually special lens called “lens babies” that are designed to produce this effect.

However, I find that I can produce exactly the same effect in two ways: one is while taking the photo, and the other is in post processing.

To produce the effect while taking the picture, it is best to use a macro lens and set it to the smallest depth of field. This is what I did for this photo that I am sharing today. You can see that only the center of the flower is sharply focused while the rest is soft and blurry.
By the way, I read somewhere that a long telephoto lens will also produce the same effect. I have not yet tried that though. I am more at home with my macro lens.

During post production, I find it easiest to use Picasa. Just open your photo in Picasa, click on ‘effects’, then click on ‘soft focus’ and viola, you get your ‘lens baby’ effect. You can also move the slider and change the either the ‘size’ or the ‘amount’ of soft focus, or you can change both. It’s that simple. Try it!

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