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how to blur background on dslr camera

Photography? Yes! Always been a fan of blurring the background to give my pics that extra oomph. From portraits to products to nature shots – blurring the background can do wonders.

Let’s learn how we can do that with a DSLR camera. Here we go!

Why Blur Background in DSLR Camera

Creating a blurry background in a photo is a great way to make the main subject stand out. This technique has been around since cameras were invented. But, it was only with the invention of DSLR cameras that photographers could get professional results. This process is called ‘achieving shallow depth of field’.

To do this, you need to control three aspects: aperture, shutter speed and focal length. The aperture controls how open or closed the lens is when taking a photo. Shutter speed decides how quick or slow the photo will be taken. Focal length is about how much background detail can be seen in the photo. Each aspect needs different settings based on the camera model, weather conditions and other factors.

By understanding how each setting works, you can control how unfocused or blurry the background looks. You can even create layered effects. These effects give professional-looking results that you can only get with a DSLR camera.

Equipment Needed

For DSLR camera background blurring, you need the right gear. Necessary items are essential for the desired effect. Here’s what you require:

Equipment and preparation.

That’s all you need to blur backgrounds on your DSLR camera!

Camera with Manual Mode

To capture amazing images, you need a digital or film camera with manual settings. This way, you can control the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO—known as the exposure triangle. These settings give photographers more creative control than auto-mode.

Before you buy the camera, make sure you research compatible equipment:

  • Camera body
  • Lens(es)
  • Memory cards
  • Tripod (optional)
  • Remote shutter release (optional)
  • Digital media reader/writer (optional)
  • Cleaning kit (optional)
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Lens with Wide Aperture

Aperture is a measure for the size of the opening in lenses when taking photos. The bigger the aperture, the more light and elements that can pass through. Wide angle lenses are great for capturing large areas, like panoramas, or for creating exaggerated perspectives. They work well for portraits too.

To shoot with low light and fast-moving subjects, pick a lens with a wide aperture (f/1.4 – f/2). Autofocus may be slower with high f-stops (≤f/2). Consider budget and needs when selecting a lens with a wide aperture.

Technical Settings

Want to blur your shots’ backgrounds? Consider the technical settings on your DSLR camera. This article talks about these settings for getting the desired blur. We explain the pros and cons of each setting.

To get the perfect background bokeh effect, read on to learn the technical settings.

Adjust Aperture

Aperture is critical when creating a blurred background in portraiture. It’s a setting in your lens which controls the light passing through the camera. For a large blurred background, set the aperture dial (labeled as ‘A’ on many Leica cameras) to a number between f1.8 and f5.6. The bigger the number, the less blur you’ll get. Lower numbers will blur the background and focus on the subject.

Keep in mind this affects depth-of-field too. To get the perfect exposure, adjust the shutter speed, ISO, or white balance.

Adjust Shutter Speed

Shutter speed makes up one of the three pillars that define the exposure triangle. It’s the time your camera’s shutter stays open to let light reach the sensor and create an image. The longer it’s open, the brighter the photo.

When adjusting shutter speed, consider lens type, ISO setting, aperture, and environment. Generally, slower shutter speeds let in more light, while faster speeds capture a scene quickly. Here’s a guideline for each environment:

Indoors: Low light or moving subjects (e.g., pets, children) require slow shutter speeds, such as 1/30th to 1/4th of a second.

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Outdoors: Sunny days with still objects (e.g., architecture, nature) need a shutter speed of 1/500th to 1/1000th of a second to get a sharp image. Motion outdoors (e.g., sports, wildlife) requires faster speeds of 1/2000th to 1/8000th of a second.

Low Light: Dim conditions require lower ISO settings and slower shutter speeds. Try 1/20 to 1/15 sec for interiors, and 1 sec for twilight.

Adjust ISO

ISO stands for “International Standards Organization,” and is used on imaging devices such as cameras, scanners and more. It adjusts the device’s sensitivity to light when taking a photo.

Using a low ISO setting makes the device less sensitive and requires longer exposure times. Raising it makes it more sensitive and shortens exposure time. Low ISO settings are good for bright images with lots of detail, while higher ISOs are best for active or night scenes.

ISO settings range from 50 to 32000. Choosing the right one depends on the camera, lighting conditions, available light sources and personal preferences. With practice, users can get great results indoors and out!

Tips and Tricks

Seeking to blur your DSLR pics’ backgrounds? There are many different methods. Pro or amateur, perfecting these can help you craft mesmerizing backgrounds.

Here’s every tip and trick to blur your DSLR photos’ background.

Find the Right Background

Backgrounds carry a lot of weight! They set the tone and add texture, color and depth to your photo or project. Choosing wisely is a must.

Minimalistic backdrops are ideal for portrait or product photography as they won’t distract from the subject. For something more eye-catching, opt for textured surfaces like wood or rusted metal. Bright reds and oranges provide great contrast too – just be careful they don’t overpower the subject.

Classic backdrops like white brick walls or brick backdrops give a timeless feel and enhance whatever is being photographed. Or, if you want to blur the background while keeping the subject in sharp focus, it can be done on a DSLR camera by adjusting the aperture and ISO settings. See our tutorial for more info!

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Choosing the right background is essential for achieving great results – whatever mood or vibe you’re trying to evoke!

Use a Tripod

A tripod is a must for taking photos, especially in low-light settings. Secure your camera over the middle column of the tripod and tighten all 3 locking screws. Then adjust the legs to get your desired shot.

Set your camera to portrait mode if needed. Adjust shutter speed and aperture according to what you’re shooting. Adjust ISO and white balance as necessary. Lastly, press the shutter button gently – no need to hold it down when shooting on a tripod. This way, you’ll get perfectly sharp pictures every time!

Experiment with Different Apertures

Are you a digital photography beginner? If so, experimenting with aperture is a great way to learn how settings work and which ones work best. The aperture is opening in a lens that controls light entering the camera body. It is measured in f-stops, either fractions (1/8) or multiples (2x, 3x).

Aperture works with shutter speed and ISO sensitivity to decide how much light enters the camera body. Larger apertures let in more light and increase depth of field. Smaller apertures reduce depth of field.

Adjusting aperture can be useful when shooting portraits. It helps blur distracting background elements and focus on facial features. When shooting landscapes or cityscapes, use wide-open apertures for crisp details in sky and backdrop elements.

Experiment by setting aperture between f/2-f/16, then compare shots taken at each setting. This way you’ll understand how each f-stop affects brightness levels and depth of field, as well as when to use specific settings given certain shooting conditions.


Put a stunning, professional finish on your photos! Blur the background on your DSLR camera to separate the subject from the backdrop. This makes the main focus stand out and draws in attention. Here’s what you need to know about blurring the background with a DSLR camera.

Get the tools you need and follow these tips:

  • Be mindful of the depth of field.
  • Adjust the aperture size.
  • Consider the distance between the subject and background.
  • Choose the right lens.
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