Welcome to the first ever Holiday Bokeh Party here at Life with my 3 Boybarians. I hope you have as much fun creating your bokeh images I did!
If you’ve not read the How to: Holiday Lights Bokeh Tutorial I encourage you to start there. But here are some answers to more questions from comments and email.
Did you use glass or a shiny white countertop to stage your lights?
Nope. Just cheap foam core. Like $3 at any craft store.
Did you use regular lights? If so how did you get them so white? When I do it with regular lights it comes out almost a yellow color.
It’s a regular ol’ strand of lights. Custom white balance prior to shooting means the whites stay white. But if you didn’t get it right in camera, you can fix it in a program like Lightroom or Photoshop.
Could I do this with LED lights?
I have no idea. But I don’t see why not!
Do you use your flash?
No way. I never use the flash on my camera, although I do have an external flash if needed. There are two ways to allow so much light in: bring in external lights, like a soft box and reflector or shoot really slow. In this case, I did both.
Do you use a tripod?
Yes. If you need to shoot slowly, it’s the only way to go. I can only handhold tack sharp around 1/125 or faster. You might be more stable, or not. Test yourself.
How do the pictures come out so clean and crisp being so close to a subject? Do you think a nice camera plays part in this?
As long as the subject is in focus, it will be sharp. Focus on the subject – not the lights. I think having a camera that can shoot manually makes this infinitely easier yes, but it can be done on a point and shoot camera. Make sure there is adequate distance between the subject and the lights and try portrait mode, or the mode that creates the most shallow depth of field.
I absolutely love the lights of this holiday – both the festival of lights and Christmas lights. Let’s see the pretty images you made!