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  • Writer's pictureRebekah

RCP Photography School: Bokeh

Hello to all who’ve joined me on day 2 of this 26 day challenge to learn about the basics of photography.

I’m sure you’ve seen so many opportunities over lockdown to learn new skills from baking to building, but I thought that you, as children, teenagers or people that need a therapy during lockdown for your mental health, would LOVE to do something that you can use your hands and mind to get creative.

If you’re doing this course, you probably already know a little bit about me but if you don’t, please check out who I am.

Today I’m going to talk about...

B for Bokeh

What is bokeh?

Bokeh was the term using to describe these extraordinary out-of-focus ‘shape’ in photographs, since 1997. It came from a Japanese word, meaning blur.

This gives you an idea of what bokeh should look like. The image on the right is what you see with your eyes. But, the left is what it looks like when it is not in focus. Not perfectly sharp. But only shapes of light and colour. It’s beautifully really.

This lesson is going to be hands on, so you’ll need a few things before we start:

  • Scissors (if you’re a child, please have a parent or guardian help you with this as it’s quite fiddly)

  • Card or paper

  • Hair bauble or elastic band

  • Lens cap (the cover that clips into your lens to protect it)

  • Pencil

  • Fairy lights or candles (again, if you’re a child, please have a parent or guardian helping you with this)

Are you ready to begin? I’m so excited, let’s go!!

So, first of all, get the card and draw around the lens cap - you want this to fit the lens on your camera when you put it over it. Make sure to leave a gap around it, so that you have 4 longer rectangle-shaped 'legs' to attach your lens. Once cut, bend the edges and draw a star or heart shape and make a slice in the middle to make it easier to cut. If you're a child, please be careful when you do this.

This is what it should look like.

Now, using the hair bauble, tie it around the lens - this will hold it on securely enough for you to take the photos.

You will need to make sure the camera is on manual mode, so that you can move the lens and create that bokeh effect. Using the different shapes you've cut out on your pieces of card, this will create the shape when the lens is out-of-focus.

This is what it looks like, out-of-focus, with either the star or heart cut outs over the lens.

Let me see your creations - please send them through to and I will share them on my Facebook/IG stories, as well as at the end of the course. Your artwork will be shown to 100s of people and feel free to send photos of yourselves in too, so that we know who the artist is behind the camera!

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