Week 3 Photo Challenge – Out of Focus

I have to admit this wasn’t my favorite theme and it’s probably because I’m always trying to get really crisp photos.  Yes, I have seen some incredible images where the subject matter is distorted.  And yes, there are various techniques you can use both in camera and in photoshop to make an image dramatic and really stand out.

For the assignment, I started with a favorite photo I took several years ago on a very cold, rainy, winter day.  This was actually taken from inside our car on a trip in the North Georgia Mountains.  My husband spotted the building as we were driving past it, did a quick U-turn and pulled into the parking lot so I could get the shot.

img_9752 010319 disappearing georgia

I have been wanting to try the technique of shooting through a plastic bag, so I started with the basic approach of auto focus, a few extra lights (no flash) and a zip lock bag over the lens (I also used a tripod).  As you can see, it was “just ok.”  If I were to take this one again, I would definitely add a bounce flash.

img_9851 out of focus

Auto Focus


I then moved to manual focus (still using the zip lock bag), but kept the image blurry.

img_9852 out of focus

Close Up, Out of Focus


From there, I decided to adjust my white balance settings inside the camera.  I left it on AWB, but applied a bracketing technique for white balance compensation.

img_9857 out of focus - 0 awb

0 Bracketing; White Balance Compensation A4, M2

img_9858 out of focus - -3awb

-3 Stops Bracketing; White Balance Compensation A4, M2

img_9859 out of focus -+3 awb

+3 Stops Bracketing; White Balance Compensation A4, M2


Then, I opened the images into Photoshop and merged them into one (1).  I also used the perspective crop tool to take about the mat.  Funny thing the photo now looks like an old photograph that has faded with time.  I use white balance compensation frequently, especially when shooting sunrises and sunsets. So it was fun to try the “photomerge” technique with these images.

img 9857 9858 9859 out of focus disappearing georgia

I’m still not convinced that “out of focus” is a technique I will use in the future.  But, you never know what photo lies ahead where this would be good to apply.

I’m looking forward to next week’s theme, “Shadows.”   Fingers crossed the weather holds up and I’ll be able to get outside for some really fun shots.





7 thoughts on “Week 3 Photo Challenge – Out of Focus

    • Thanks, Anne! I shoot with a Canon 6d which I believe is the equivalent to the Nikon D610 (they both came out about the same time. White Balance compensation is a setting (on my camera next to the AWB setting) which allows you to also adjust on a grid the reds, greens, blues and magentas. It’s a pretty cool setting……I can e-mail you screen shots if you’d like….. 🙂


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