How to Quickly Fake Depth of Field with FIELD BLUR in Photoshop

How to Quickly Fake Depth of Field with FIELD BLUR in Photoshop

August 7, 2019 1 By Peter Engel


what’s going on creative family, it’s
Dustin Valkema and welcome back! today we’re focusing on how to fake a depth of
field in Photoshop using the blur gallery I’m looking forward to it folks
let’s concerted alright guys here we are in Photoshop taking a look at an image
that might be a little bit more complex but what I like about this is that in
its early on stages here and the composite there were a couple of
different elements that I needed to fake this depth of field on so that had to do
with the background the cape and then Superman himself so to get started here
we’ll work on the background first and you’ll notice that this background image
here is a smart object and I always prefer to work on smart objects if I can
because I just gives me the flexibility to go back and adjust any of the any of
the filters that we put on this smart object later on in the cup now with the
background selected I generally use field blur from the blur gallery rather
than Gaussian blur and I can show you why so if we head up the blur and
Gaussian blur you can see that gauzy and blur gives you a nice creamy background
if that’s your desired result but it also gives you a lot of feathering here
on the edges and it can get quite weird at times and so I really don’t like to
use this if I’m trying to fake a depth of field it does have its uses but it’s
not something that I like to use too often so we can click cancel now if we
head up to filter blur gallery and field blur this is what I use most of the time
what I like about field blur is that it gives you these pins that you can work
with you can create multiple pins around your composite and I like the the little
interactive dial here so if you click on this dial you can adjust your blur
amount the coolest part about this is that you can create different blur
amounts for different elements of your composite and so if you have buildings
say that are you know closer to the foreground you can blur those less than
you would a background and you can you can really add as many pins as you want
but it’s definitely something that gives us a pretty sweet result
so we’ve just deleted the rest of the pins here so that we could have one
constant rate of blur going on in the scene now I will note here that you do
have these different effects as bokeh color and light bokeh and then your
bokeh range it’s not something that I’m going to get into in this specific
tutorial because I don’t really use that for date faking a depth of field here
but it is definitely worth noting it just makes my computer run a little bit
slow here at the moment so emotion effects you can also use these when
you’re using the path blur and the spin blur because you can combine and stack
these different effects up here in the blur gallery again we’ll get to that and
a little bit more of an advanced tutorial later on but what I do like
about this is that if we use a higher rate of blur
I also have the option to add or witched definitely going to help with banding if
we have it and if we need to do any of that but for right now I think we can
just turn all of that down to zero and maybe just keep this background blur
kind of in the middle range value so that we still have quite a bit of detail alright so with the background blurred
done we can close that and now we’ll work here on the Cape
and so how I’ll do the Cape is very in a very similar fashion we’ll just head up
to filter blur gallery we can run right into field blur and so what we’ll do for
the Cape is we can actually get the the base bokeh set and so we can raise up
this blur here and get a pretty cool depth going on now if you press ctrl +
alt or command + option you can drag these to duplicate them and so what I’ll
do is I’ll duplicate one to the other side here so that they both have the
same value and then we can create one more pin that’s here at the top now a
little bit more in the chest a range of Superman and we can just take
that rate of blur down quite a ways and so what that’s going to do is give
us a pretty sweet effect in fact we can probably bring that down close to zero
maybe just having a little bit there would be fine but it’s really nice
because what it does is it gives us the option of having this Cape here blurred
quite a bit and then have the hands ition fold into nobler depending on what
these pens are so we can bring this one back down here we don’t quite need it
that high and maybe what I’ll do is I’ll keep this blur amount in the back and
then we can just duplicate this pin here to the front so hey this isn’t the
foreground and so we’ll decrease that quite a bit
because it is still behind his hand there but we don’t need it to be quite
as heavy as what this other is here so with that done we go ahead and click
okay let it process now for the last bit of this we’ll deal with our subjects so
again our subject is on a smart object so it will be nice in case we need to
tweak this a lot of times I really like to work this way because there’s times
where I get further into my comp and say hey I don’t want my depth of field to be
that crazy and so I turn it down quite a ways but what we’ll do here is we can
create I’m just start to work the depth of field around our subject and so we’ll
say that here in this chest the depth of field is at zero so we can bring the
blur down to zero and then on this foreground hand here and scan he’s gonna
have some some depth of field happening there so we’ll click on his face we can
make that zero as well we can say here in this public range we can just copy
this down so that’ll be zero but maybe on this
front knee here I want this to have a little bit of a depth to it doesn’t need
to be quite as bad as the rest but we can leave something there maybe on his
hand here towards the back we’ll give that a little bit of depth as well and
we can push that a little bit further that way and so I think at this point it
ends up working quite well we can go ahead and push some of these a little
bit here just for the sake of the tutorial so that we can see what we’re
doing oops created a wrong one there then push
this foreground hand just a little bit that one in the back was a little bit
too harsh and now if you really want to start
pushing some of the thresholds here that are happening this is really kind of
proximity based between where these pins are in relation to one another to what
kind of fall off the depth of field effect has and so you can see here that
this fall out transitions happening between this pin here on his PEC and the
one that’s there on his hand but now if I delete this pin that’s on its pectoral
then you can see that fall off transition goes a little bit smoother
between the one and the center of his chest and the one in his hand and so in
most cases this is exactly how I’ll handle the depth of field and at times
what I may do is put a pin right on the outside if I want to blur some of these
edges that are happening here and I will just make that transition quite a bit
smaller just by placing these pins in different locations so that we have a
very slight blur there right and the edges
and that generally works quite well Computers freaking out at the moment so hopefully my audio is not too bad
that’s crazy probably gonna blue screen in a minute
I’ll see if we can kill it all right so I’d do the same thing up here on the
head so I can create another pin let’s just see if we can kill the computer
here once I won’t be mad this time promise so we can drop that blur copy
that over to the other side a little bit kind of keep that same blur amount there
on that back shoulder and then with this pin that has a blur radius of zero
we can bring this here down into his neck area and then maybe one right over
to his shoulder there so that gives us a really nice bit of depth there but we
won’t get into too much detail I tend to talk a lot while I’m doing this kind of
stuff so at this point we can go ahead and click OK and let this process and
I’ll catch you guys when it’s finished all right so now if that’s done
processing I’ve created two groups here one that has our depth of field faking
applied and the other that doesn’t and you can immediately see the difference
in the focus that it helps pull to our subject here and it really just helps a
little bit more of the intimate nature of some of these powerful shots now what
I would do in most cases this tutorial is really quite a bit faster just to
show you guys the basics of how I would do this quickly because the actual
process when I’m doing it doesn’t take too long however I would go in and pay a
little bit more attention to having a couple more pins here throughout my
subject just to push that depth of field a little bit further and then I would
also make sure that I had some of these edges here blurred before I went into
compositing effects and different things of that nature but it’s just a base
tutorial that I think this gives you guys a really good food for thought and
somewhere to start off in your own creative process so I hope that helps
alright guys so that wraps up this tutorial on faking a depth of field in
Photoshop hopefully you guys learned something that you can implement into
your workflow as always create more say less and stay creative I’ll see you guys
next time you you