Chris Marquardt on Photography

Episode 1300 (1:11:22)

This week, Chris wants to talk about using focus. Obviously, you want to focus on faces when you are taking pictures of people, but focus can be used to tell a story and if you understand why focus is important, then you can use it to direct attention properly. When you take a picture, it's your job to guide the attention of the viewer. If you don't, the photo won't be as strong about what it really is about. Focus does that.

How much focus? Chris says you get to influence depth of field with a camera, and the larger the sensor, the more control you have of it. How much focus do you use? A super wide angle lens can give you a shallow depth of field that can be off putting. But Chris says sometimes a camera can get the focus wrong. Choosing the wrong thing in focus. So you have to learn manual techniques as well. That can be hard with a more automatic camera like a smartphone or point and shoot. Leo says that's one of the shortcomings of taking a picture with a smartphone, everything is in focus. Chris says sure, but it can also force you to become a better photographer to work around it. But generally, having a camera that gives you the manual focus option can be helpful. There's a think called focus peaking on advanced cameras that will go red when you're out of focus and green when it's sharp. Another tip you can do is zoom into the subject, focus on it until it's sharp, and then zoom out.

Don't forget our current assignment - TECHNOLOGY. Take a photo of, about or otherwise concerning the concept of "Technology" and then post it to the Tech Guy Group on Flickr. Make sure to tag it with the word "Technology" as well! And if Chris likes it, it could end up on next month's photo contest review segment!