In celebration of the great weather and the fact that I walk like a zombie because of my rather swollen ankle (how it got injured, I'm not quite sure--all I know is that it had to do with soccer), I've decided to do another quick and easy photoshop tutorial. Apart from taking photos at train tracks, another essential must for bloggers is the blurry quality of the background in photos (or "shallow depth of field"--thanks to Chris!). Yeah, you could buy a $700 camera and lens with a lower f-stop, or you could just use photoshop (which technically costs a lot too but...).
The photo below was taken with an f-stop of 1.8. But if I wanted it any blurrier, this is what I'd do.
1. Open up the image on photoshop. I use Adobe Photoshop CS5.
2. Right click the image layer of the image and duplicate it.
3. While selecting the "copy" layer, select "Gaussian Blur" under the "Blur" section of the "Filter" tab.
4. A window will pop up. Select the radius of the blur as necessary (increasing the radius makes the photo blurrier). Remember to not overdo it!
5. While selecting the "copy" layer, select an eraser brush of appropriate size and change the hardness to 0%. Erase whatever you want to be in focus.
6. View only the "copy" layer to make sure that you've erased everything you wanted to erase.
7. To make the blurriness more realistic, erase the bottom layer of the photo.
8. To make the blurriness less uniform, while using the eraser brush, select a lesser opacity and gradually erase the bottom layer until a gradient has formed.
9. You're done! Now you can merge the two layers and continue editing.