I’m not a huge fan of the Black Eyed Peas (I even think David Guetta killed the group), but while watching at the “Just Can’t Get Enough” video clip, I enjoyed the work on light and noticed for about one second (at 0:54) a very subtle shot:

This beautiful blur is called a bokeh. It appears when an out-of-focus point of light is captured by the camera. Some photographers like to play with it.

Usually, the light spots make discs on the picture, but here they are hearts. How come ?
Well, the shape of a bokeh is linked to the shape of the aperture of the camera. So I bet the photographer used an heart-shaped aperture in this shot.

Of course, this effect could be computer generated, a convolution between a heart and the image does the trick, but let’s believe it’s not a fake.

my camera and hand-carved business cards

I wanted to try it at home to see if anyone can do it, it appears that it’s pretty straightforward: just carve a heart in a card and put it in front of the camera. Then point some lights and manually set them out-of-focus. Results are pretty good.

Bokeh with an usual aperture
Same scene with a heart-shaped aperture

6 thoughts on “Bokeh”

  1. I’ve been doing this for a long time now. It’s kinda fun to see the results of your work.
    I’ve made a heart, a bowtie, a dollar sign and several others.

    Thanks for sharing,


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