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Must-Get Christmas Pictures Before the Tree Comes Down!

The Christmas tree provides an excellent background for some really unique photos – here’s a quick photography tutorial on how to get some great shots before your tree comes down!

Christmas Tree Bokeh - Top Christmas Pictures to Get Before the Tree Comes Down!

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How to Take Photos in Font of The Christmas Tree

1. The Christmas Tree Classic Bokeh

Canon 85mm 1.8
f/1.8
1/40 sec
1600 ISO

To get those big, beautiful, blurry lights, use your lens with the lowest aperture- For this picture, I used the 85mm 1.8, but the 50mm 1.8 or 50mm 1.4 would also work nicely.

Place your subject as far away from the tree as possible- we moved some furniture around so Howie could be about 8 ft away from the tree. The farther away the subject is, the bigger, and better, the lights will look.

To take the picture, get as close to the subject as possible. You know how you can be so close to the subject that the lens won’t focus? I found that if I got that close, then scooted back just enough so that the lens would focus, the lights looked better. I have no idea why that is- I just preferred the ones that I took like that! :)

Christmas Tree Custom Bokeh - Top Christmas Pictures to Get Before the Tree Comes Down!

2. The Christmas Tree *Custom* Bokeh

Canon 50mm 1.8
f/1.8
1/15 sec
1600 ISO

Meep!! Little Howie surrounded by Christmas Hearts! :) Custom Bokeh is my favorite new technique. No, I don’t have little heart-shaped Christmas lights on my tree… and I didn’t have to buy any special lenses or filters to get this look, either! All I had to do was use a little tape, scissors and paper- all the stuff I already have in my scrapbook room. And the best part is, you can have custom bokeh in any shape you can cut out. Hearts, stars, mini Christmas trees.. I even tried a snowflake. You want to see something cool? Try this out. The original photo doesn’t change shapes.. Only the lights are affected! Come on, I’ll show you.

custom-bokeh-tutorial-1

Supplies You’ll Need

1. SLR Camera
2. 50mm 1.8 lens
3. Black cardstock
4. Removable adhesive
5. Scissors / decorative shape punches
6. Pencil
7. Tape

custom-bokeh-tutorial-2-3-4-5

1. To begin, take a strip of paper and form a ring around your 50mm lens- tape the paper together so that it fits snugly around the lens.

2. Take the ring off the lens, place it on a piece of black cardstock and trace a circle around the ring.

3. Cut out the circle

4. Cut a square in the middle of the circle. I used an Xacto knife, but you could just use scissors. It doesn’t have to look pretty!

custom-bokeh-tutorial-6

5. So, now you have a ring and a circle with a square cut out of the middle. Tape them together like pictured above to form a “hood”. For the benefit of the picture, I put the tape on the inside so you can’t see it, but you could tape it on the outside instead. It’s easier and it works just as well.

custom-bokeh-tutorial-7-8

6. Now it’s time to cut out your shapes! You can use scissors or an Xacto knife (or even a die cutting machine) to cut out any shape you can imagine. I had these little punches that made it really easy.

7. Cut out your shape, being sure to leave enough room on the edges so you can attach it to the “hood”. I used removable adhesive so I could easily switch between shapes on the hood.

custom-bokeh-tutorial-9

8. Attach the shape to the hood and put the hood on your lens- when you’re all done, it should look like this.

Of course, I used a heart punch for the picture of Howie. I did have to use a tripod to take the custom bokeh pictures. Using the hood lets in less light, so you have to set your shutter speed slower to compensate- in my case, too slow to hand hold. But you don’t have to have a tripod. You could set your camera on a coffee table, tv tray, chair, bench, ottoman, whatever! Anything steady you can get your hands on.

custom-bokeh-snowflakes

Canon 85mm 1.8
f/1.8
1/8 sec
800 ISO

I loved how the snowflake punched turned out! Unfortunately by this time my models were thoroughly uncooperative, so I just had to take pictures of the tree. :P

To get this look, focus on something close to the lens, like your hand, with the tree blurry in the background. Then move it out of the way and take the picture.

Christmas Tree Bokeh - Top Christmas Pictures to Get Before the Tree Comes Down!

The size of your cut-out will affect size of your custom bokeh- so play around with different shapes and sizes for all kinds of neat looks.

custom-bokeh-monogram

I even tried punching out the letter “B”. The possibilities are endless! :)

I would LOVE to see your Christmas Tree Bokeh pics!! :) Leave me a link to your pics in the comments- or share with me on Facebook. I would love to leave a comment for ya!

Thanks for looking! :)

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173 Responses
  1. Lucianna

    Hello,

    I’m a newbie and just bought my first Canon T3I over black friday…… and this blog is wonderful! So I tried this picture out both ways this morning and had to play around w it a little, but at the end was very successful. Here’s what worked for me, I used AF on my 50mm 1.8 canon lens, and I obviously changed my focus to the subject on the left. Both pictures look beautiful with the heart bokeh and with out.

    Thank you for sharing all this information!!

    1/25-1/40
    F 1.8
    Iso 1600

  2. Grisel Blanco

    OMG, I enjoyed this tutorial SOOOOO much!!!! :D You make it sound so simple!!! (: Thanks for sharing this wonderful information. I’m starting to get into photography because I want to take better pictures of my cards, so I’ve been looking up basic photography tutorials on YouTube and many people use terminology that feels like a foreign language to me, but you explained things so well here. I will definitely be coming back to learn more photography tips from you!!! :D

  3. andrea

    Hi guys, this is an awesome blog! just came across it the other day and im loving the tips. My smallest aperature lens is is 18-55mm 3.5. I dont know if ill be able to get the bokeh effect, any adjustments for this lens to still get these awesome photos?
    Thanks!

  4. Christi Hartwell

    I have always wanted to try this ! And I did once I was inspired by your post ! Thanks for the tutorial, I just tried this out & it worked .I’ll be photographing my children in front of the tree once they get home from school! I’ll add the link to the images once I post them ! Thanks

  5. Becky

    I’ve had my dslr for a year and am just now venturing into modes other than the preset ones. I only have the 55mm, so I set the settings to f4.5, 1/10 sec, ISO 1600. I got a totally different look with my kiddos, but I still love it. Not sure if you can see it on my FB page, but here’s the link. I’ll be posting it on my blog soon, so I’ll come back to share. Thank you for giving me courage to adjust settings on manual! =)

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=4841284868144&set=a.4841282388082.2190269.1177482775&type=1&theater

  6. Molly

    I must be doing something wrong – I tried matching all your settings exactly, and all I get is a tiny bit of photo, whatever’s showing through the cut out shape, and my lights aren’t shaped at all.

  7. Jenny

    Hi. I am going to attempt this tomorrow night and was wondering what kind of light you had in the room other than the tree lights. Thanks!

  8. Heather Kelly

    I am DETERMINED to get a custom bokeh pic with my 3 boys (9, 2.5 and 2 months). Of course, I am having some trouble with 3 squirmy little guys. I did some practice/ test runs last night. I got the bokeh shots, but once I threw the kids in front of the camera the results were rather terrible. I am thinking that I might be better off photoshopping the custom bokeh into a photo of the 2 boys….Any suggestions?

  9. Hollie

    I love photography, but never had the time or money to truly get into it, but I wanted to comment on your dog! Love him. I have a Boston, and just love seeing photographs of others.

  10. Shug in Boots

    Hi!
    So excited to find this … however, my pics are showing the whole photo in a heart shaped frame … which makes me need to crop it … also, the lights are blurry, but not in a heart shape …. what am I doing wrong?

  11. Camille

    Did you have all the lights in the room off for this or do want the lights on? I’m trying to take our Christmas photos but I dont know if I should leave my indoor lights on…

  12. Christina

    I just got an early Christmas present yesterday…my first DSLR camera and I’m super excited to try this out. Thanks for the idea.

  13. Silly lady!

    Sorry I do believe I’m being most stupid and feel totally silly for asking but love the bokeh effect so much I have to. How do you take the photo. On the custom filter it looks like you have just cut out little hearts and nothing else. If the entire lens is covered up bar a single heart, how are you seeing any image out of the lens other than a heart shape outline of what the camera is pointed at?
    I’m sure there are many people who think I’m a total thicky but I’m prepared to look that way in order to achieve such a beautiful look.
    Ps. Howie is a star bar!!! Xxx

  14. Melissa

    Hi, I tried to do this and it didnt work. My aperture would only go to 3.5. does that make a difference? Also my camera wouldnt even take a picture with the hood on. Please let me know, i really wanted to do a valentine picture. Thank you!

  15. Ali B.

    Hi there. I absolutely love the ides of this tutorial. Bokeh is so beautiful when done right.
    I was so intrigued when I saw this tutorial because I have always wanted to make my own bokeh shapes. I went through it and did everything exactly as it says. I even et my camera to the specifications as closely to yours as I could. However, it did not turn out at all like yours. I was wondering if I could email you the picture I took and see if you could tell me what I did wrong.
    I would really appreciate it!

    Thanks,
    Ali

  16. Meagan

    (long time blog-stalker, first time commenting!) You have rocked my world with this tutorial! This is amazing! Keep up the amazing blog.

  17. Katie@MyDarlingDays

    Hopped over from The Hollie Rogue, WOW – you are basically brilliant. LOVE this tutorial and can’t wait to try it out. Thanks so much for the inspiration. *New Follower!*

  18. Hanna

    Thank you SO much for sharing this. I made it last night and it’s amazing. I have 5 babies needing Christmas pictures this week and now they get to be spiced up! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! :)

  19. Ashley Beolens

    I love doing this type of bokeh work, but I have always used a piece of foam cut to the size of the exit apperture of the lens with the shape cut in the center, your method seems more stable :)

  20. Noob Mommy

    Love your tutorial and very easy to follow directions! The bokah is beautiful and have wondered how to get such lovely lights in my photos. Thank you!

  21. Kat

    I am leaving my tree up until I figure this out!!
    I have a fuju finepix s700 point and shoot (saving up slowly for a Canon 60D or Ti2)…

    I HOPE I get it!

  22. Casey

    Aha! One of the great mysteries of photography revealed! I could not for the life of me figure this one out. Thanks for a great tutorial! Now all I need is the right camera! Santa Baby?

  23. Tiffany Harvey

    Thank you so much for this tutorial! I had no idea this was possible. Here you can see some of the pics I took as well as a few tips I figured out (didn’t need a tripod).

    Oh! And I used something like photo corners to attach the papers to the front of the paper hood, so I wouldn’t have to worry about storing little sticky pieces.

  24. Wendy

    WOW! These are great! I am going to try to get a portrait of my girls in this style. I can’t wait to try. What is the best time of day to do this?

    1. Wendy

      Question…I want to get more lights in the background and my subjects smaller but in my pictures for some reason I just have a little bit of lights around the subjects, and they seem HUGE. If I back up more I get too much “junk” in the background and again less lights. Maybe my subjects are too far from the tree? Any other suggestions?

      Thanks!

  25. Sharon R

    Love this, especially making the shapes–I also discovered that if all you want is the bokeh and/or there’s nothing for you to focus on in the foreground, you can just change your lens to manual focus and turn the focus ring until you get the effect you want before snapping your pic. You may have to experiment with distance to the lights etc. I did this with a panel of lights at the mall so I could use the bokeh for a texture.

  26. pk @ Room Remix

    This is awesome! I already took some photos of my tree but now I’m going to have to take some more and try this. Thanks so much!

  27. Evelyn Ball

    Very cool. I have always wondered how people do that. Do you think it could work in other settings or just on lights?

    Thanks as always for providing us with wonderful information.

  28. Tiffany @ No Ordinary Homestead

    That is so cool! I was just looking at custom bokeh’s on photojojo and thinking how cool that would look…and now I find your tutorial on how to make them which is even cooler!

    Thanks so much for sharing this. I am definitely going to have to try it out! :)

  29. PatriciaD

    I am right there with everyone else just AMAZED at the creativity and ingenuity of your photography. Do you ever get near Springfield, MO and want to spend an hour or twenty showing a bunch of us here some of your cool tricks!! SO AWESOME!!

  30. Janet Cahow

    You are genius!! I can’t wai to try this. I am new to photoraphy so I struggle with the whole aperture, f/ shot thing. Thanks for the instructions.

  31. Pat

    Thanks for the excellent tutorial. I have always been intrigued by bokeh, and now having all these special effects in my repertoire, well, I just love it.

  32. Tracey C

    I used your information about to take a picture of my Christmas tree this year. I could never get a pictre of the tree with the lights on the tree on. The flash always over powered the lights and it always looked like the treee lights were not on. The picture came out so beautiful. It could be a greeting card photo.

    Thanks for your knowledge.
    TC

  33. Angelica Norris

    Hey Amanda, I also have the Canon 85mm 1.8 lens that you have, and I was curious if you lens ever got an UNINTENTIONAL blurry look to it? The lens was great and sharp when I first got it, and of course blurry in the background since it is a Macro lens, but here lately when I edit my photos, it seems that I really have to sharpen them (lots!) Any suggestions or thoughts?

  34. Curly Heir

    Anxious to try this out tomorrow! My CHRISTmas tree lights go up tomorrow! And yes… how did you get the dog to stay so still? I am going to attempt my dog and 3 children! Loving the site!!!

  35. Aliy

    “”I found that if I got that close, then scooted back just enough so that the lens would focus, the lights looked better. I have no idea why that is- I just preferred the ones that I took like that! :)””

    Distance away from your subject is also a big factor in creating great depth of field in your images. Regardless of the aperture the closer you are to the subject the more depth of field will be created. Moving the dog farther away from the Tree would also help increase the depth of field and the creaminess of the lights.

    Awesome tutorial. I never thought to do this myself, I could have saved hundreds in equipment! lol

  36. Lisa Carson

    That is such a cute idea! I have a canon T1i and the 18-55 and 55-250 lens would the 18-55 work? How did you get your dog in there too without it looking like he was in a heart?
    I’m loving your blog, just ran acrossed it.
    Lisa

    1. Aliy

      Lisa,

      Any lens and focal length will work. If it doesn’t work at first try increasing the distance between your subject and the lights.

      I don’t know have amanda did it, but I presume she cropped the photo so it was no longer heart shaped.

  37. Diana

    Hi! Thanks for the step-by-step. I goofed it up though, because of the tape, it was hard to tape from the inside! And also, i’ve realized that i need a 50mm lens. I have two: 35-80mm and 18-55mm. They are both Canon, but not quite right, so now, i have a true reason to buy a new one. This is really cool. I used a shape puncher of a musical note. “}

  38. Sarah K

    I’m a new reader so late to this post but I just love it, I had no idea it was even possible to make shapes! And just a side note, as soon as I saw the first picture I was like “hey! that was a PW holiday bokeh finalist” LOL!

  39. Merely Meredith

    How cool! I’m *obviously* 6 WHOLE months late but at least I’ll get to wow a bunch of people *this* Christmas! Thanks for sharing…I’ve been on KevinandAmanda.com ALL day! lol!

    -Merely Meredith

  40. siti fairus

    hi amanda,

    i loved your website. it’s inspiring and fun.

    i really like to know how you made the fancy comment form with numberings and bullets?

    really appreciate it. thanks! :)

  41. Vanilla Bean

    Thanks so much for the great tutorial! I can’t wait to try it. I hope that it is ok that I blogged about this post today on my blog.

  42. Joy

    Amanda,
    Your custom bokeh is a WONDERFUL idea!! I LOVE it and am just getting ready to give it a try. I’d love to link to you from my blog…but I just don’t think I can do it. There’s just this ONE THING holding me back…
    …but knowing we won the National Championship last night made me feel good enough that I could even leave a comment on an AU fan’s site, LOL.
    Good Work Amanda!! Now if you’d just come over to the Tide side… ;)
    Best Wishes,
    Joy
    http://joyslife.com/
    Here’s a little work I did to my Cricut Expression. I’m sure you’ll hate it! LOL
    http://joyslife.com/roll-tide-alabama-cricut-expression/

  43. Allison

    Oh my goodness Amanda! That is awesome! You are a genius! I loved the hearts on the tree and was just going to ask you how you did that when I kept reading! Thanks for posting that!!

    Hope you’re doing well and that the holidays didn’t kill you with extra weight…unlike some people over here…. (looking away in guilt)

  44. Sarah

    I stumbled upon your blog a couple weeks ago and love all your pictures! And now on this post I see you’re one featured on Pioneer Woman’s blog! Fun! And thanks for sharing some tips, as I’m trying to learn how to use my camera better!

  45. Kayla

    Hey… those bokeh pics, I have a couple of questions.
    I make the hood and everything and that’s fine, but I’m taking a picture of my subject AND the background with lights at the same time and it comes out just like how you have it with Howie?
    I’m new to the site and I saw this and I just *had* to ask! I’m a little bit of an aspiring photographer- nothing pro, just a hobby- and I love this.

  46. Sarah McVey Photography

    This was so much fun! I found the key to making the “stars” visible – was the distance of the tree to your subject (Farther the better) AND the distance of your subject to you (Closer the better). Try upping your ISO if you have a fidgety subject (HA! My two yrd, Aurora!), that way you can speed up the shutter speed to compensate. PS. Noiseware + CS3 = score! I’ll be posting some of my trys on my flickr a little later! Check ’em out!

  47. Katie

    Can you explain the differences between the 85mm lense and the 50mm? I have the 50mm and I like it, but I find it to autofocus really slowly when I’m using the flash indoors. I’m looking for an all purpose lense. Would you recommend the 85mm??

  48. Ronda Simpson

    OMG! You rock! lol! Every time I visit your blog, you have some kind of amazing idea!! This is way cool! Thanks for sharing!

  49. Rachel

    This is SO cool! Our tree is already down for this year, but I’m definitely stealing this idea and doing next year! Thanks so much for sharing!

    PS – Congrats on being a finalist on PW :)

  50. Ladynred

    Wow! this is fantastic tut. I’ve been trying to get that 50mm 1.4 last week online but there was a problem so now I really need that lens.

  51. LolaT

    I loved your tutorial and your cute doggie photos are such a great motivator to try it out. I have more than enough dogs already (four) but it makes me want your dog!
    Here’s a link to my attempt -all I could find was a flower punch for these quick shots of my kids in their new Christmas home-made pajamas. Thanks!

  52. Diane {createdbydiane.blogspot.com}

    What a creative idea, my point and shoot canon is in for repair(really bad time for a camera to break don’t you think?) I hope to get an SLR in Jan. I will have to remember this!
    Thanks!
    I recently found your blog and love it!
    I’m going to follow you on twitter too. I’m @createdbydiane

  53. marsha j

    thanks for the tutorial on this. i loved it. my husband and i tried it and after trying to take a pic of just the tree i went back and read the instructions and then we focused on a subject in front of the tree and that worked. LOL if all else fails read the instructions again.so, my husband and i took a pic of each other then also the dog. the dog we put on a coffee table in front of the tree as we have a table tree. the dog did really good. anyway i will post pics somewhere here or at ck magazine.

  54. Tammy Eastlick

    I love the tutorial. Like many others my lowest is f/4.5. I will definitely try it though and see what I can come up with. I’ve also got to put the bug in Santa’s ear so who knows what will happen. :)

    Please keep the tutorials comming. you are an amazing photographer.
    Thanks for sharing your love of photography with us all.

  55. Lori

    The only punch I have is of a teddy bear. Teddy bear BOKEH! It looks so cute!! I will just have to get brave and cut out other shapes myself. Thanks for the tutorial!

  56. Trix

    Thank you so much for this cool tutorial. I had a lot of fun trying to recreate your photo. I love taking photos of my pooch, Charlie but she really got a bit sick of the whole process on this occassion. Never mind, I’m pretty happy with the results and am looking forward to my next doggy photo shoot. Once again, thank you very much!

  57. Sarah.Elizabeth

    oh dear… have to apologize for the dumb grammar errors.. i’m OCD about it.. so i have to correct myself.. “you never cease to AMAZE me.” :P :]

    p.s. merry christmas! :D

  58. Coleen

    great tip! I’ve been a pro photog for 20+ years; I own all kinds of screens, etc. but never thought to do this .. so fun! I love learning new things… thanks!

    do you ever post pix on flickr? these bokeh pix would be such a hit!!

  59. Deana

    I think you are the coolest chic ever! Where you come up with these ideas is beyond me! :) Thanks for getting the creative juices flowing and for being a source of inspiration! I’m totally giving this a try. :) Thanks and Happy Holidays to you and your family!

  60. Deidre

    This was super cool! I love it! I am going to try and see how this works for myself! It could end up disasterous though. lol

    Thanks for sharing!
    Deidre

  61. Betty Bake

    thanks for a lovely idea with good instructions – i will have to give it a try :) so as a few of the people commented before – do you just shoot through the star shape and howie is perfectly still and the lights come out in stars? have a great day :)
    Betty Bake

  62. Veronica

    Thank you SOooooo… much Amanda!! I LOVE this technique . I will have to try this! Thanks so much for sharing your expertise! I luv your blog!!!

  63. Randa Pospisil

    NO WAY!!!! Had no idea what a bokeh was! This is really awesome. You must have read my big whiny comments on your facebook post about Christmas tree pics ;)
    I will take a whack at it, even though, like many of the others I have only a 4.5 aperture…we’ll see what happens!

  64. Heyoka Lynn

    I LOVE THE TUTORIAL ABOUT THE BLACK PAPER AND THE LITTLE CUT OUTS, THANKS SO MUCH, you kids are so clever, Been a photographer for 35 years, even had a pro studio in the ’90s and never, ever, thought of this one…oh, we had some tricks of the trade, but hadn’t seen this one and thanks, I am trying it for fun…heyoka lynn

  65. Southern Gal

    Love this! I got a similar effect with my point and shoot. I held up pair of cheap glasses that make lights look like snowflakes in front of the lens to take a picture of the multi-colored lights in my son’s room. It worked beautifully. But this? This is awesome!

  66. Becky

    I’m toooo amazed to say anything. Love the pics but thinking the heart shaped one would be cute for valentine cards. Merry Christmas week.

  67. Carla Cavellucci Landi

    Amanda, you find always ways to be more “utopic” for me (just kidding, you know!!!!). Loved the ideia, I’m not sute I’ll be able to do it but I’LL TRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Thank you so much!!!!! Happy Xmas!!

  68. Pati

    Very Cool and fun tip! Thanks for sharing it Amanda. The lowest f/# I have is 3.5. I may play with it to see what happens otherwise I’ll keep tip this in case Santa brings me a new lens : )

  69. Maria

    WOW, fantastic photos, great tutorial, thank you!!!

    For those, who ask how is Howie so crystal clear… it is not a long exposure photo. The shutter is not open for a long time, 1/40 is a 40th of a second, quicker then a blink. That is why Howie is so clear. When U use huge aperture (low f-number), lots of light goes into the camera so U don’t need too much time to make the shot. That is why the dog is not blurry

  70. Nancy Hunter

    THANK YOU!!! I so appreciate you sharing this wonderful information. I can hardly wait to try it out. Makes me want to keep Christmas lights up in the house all year long! Have a fantastic holiday with your family and give your sweet little dog a hug from me!
    XO Nancy

  71. Tracy

    Even though I have no motivation to actually DO that, it was WAY cool to see the pictures and seeing how you did it!!! Thanks for sharing!! (I’m crossing fingers for FONTS for 2010?:)

  72. Rachelle @ "Mommy? I'm Hungry!"

    That is so neat! Great tip for the little shapes. What kind of other lighting did you have in the room? Also you don’t use the flash, right?

  73. Maureen Feist

    You definitely have a new fan! Just had your blog passed along to me this morning! Look for an explosion of new followers! Can’t wait to try this technique.

    1. Aliy

      Jessica,

      2.8 will work! did you figure it out? You just need to get as close to your subject as possible. If it doesn’t come out then move your subject farther away from the back ground. Aperture (1.8 v 2.8 etc) is not the only factor in Depth of field.

  74. Kim H

    You must be the most creative and imaginative person on this planet. Where do you come up with all this? You had me fooled though when I saw the hearts on the tree :) Howie is adorable and you are one major talent. Merry Christmas.

  75. Lauren

    Definitely giving this a try later on this week! I’d seen this before but your tutorial is really great for breaking it down–thank you!

  76. silke

    I’m wondering also, how you got Howie so crystal clear and how to get many of blurry hearts if you have only ONE on your lens???

    thanks for the tip, I’ll try it!!

    1. Marissa

      The heart that she made changes the shape of the bokeh, which is the out of focus circles (or hearts in this case) from lights. Bokeh is usually shaped in circles, but with the little hood she made it changes all of the Bokeh, so it will all look like hearts, or snowflakes, butterflies, whatever you like. The little hood just alters the shape of circles, so you only need one shape to make many. I hope that makes sense.

      Also, Howie is clear because of the aperture Amanda used. If you’re not familiar with aperture, this is what makes the picture more focused, depending on how wide it is. Amanda changed her aperture to focus on Howie, but to have the background out of focus.

      Hope I helped

  77. Hopeful Housewife

    WOW! Could you make me long for a “good” camera any more? Any pointers for those of use using point and click digitals?

  78. Casie

    So, then do you just take the picture of your subject “through” the little shape hood that you cut out? And the subject will come out lighted and clear and just the Christmas tree lights will be a different shape? Like your first two pictures? Did you use any special lighting to light up your subject? Since the shutter has to stay open so long, how did you get Howie so crystal clear (I would figure he would move too much). Thanks!

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Meet Kevin & Amanda

Kevin and Amanda

We love to travel and to eat! Here we share our favorite quick and easy recipes for busy weeknight dinners, plus travel tips and guides for our favorite places around the world. Meet our Boston Terriers. Take a tour of our house. If you have any questions about what camera I use or how I edit my photos, check out my photography tutorials.

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