Tutorial: How to get bokeh in SL

Bokeh isn’t just for real life photographers. You can get it in Second Life, too.

What is bokeh? Literally, it’s blur. That’s what bokeh means in Japanese. But it’s so much more than that. That blur can be so beautiful, so pleasing to the eye. Photographers love bokeh; they covet that lovely, blurry effect I’ve tried to demonstrate in this featured photo, Bokeh Poppies.

Here’s how you can get bokeh in SL:

1. Find a spot with nice sun and scenery that breaks up the light, like tall grass, foliage, or a field of flowers. Or even something with lots of lights. It all works. You just don’t want a flat, even background like a wall.

2. Turn on your DoF.
Alt+P will bring up Phototools in FS. Turn on your DoF under the DoF tab.

3. Set your f-number low (Also on the DoF tab.). This gives you a shallower depth of field. Just know, it focuses more attention on your foreground image. The background will fade out, causing that bokeh effect people love.

4. Increase you Circle of Confusion (CoC) to really make your bokeh pop. 20 is a nice number. Keep in mind CoC can put a lot of stress on your computer, though.

I shot this with a simulated 85mm lens: View angle – .497; FoV – 28.5; Foc Length – 85mm. The default 50mm lens you normally use in SL works fine, but getting closer with a lens like the 85mm will give you better bokeh.

4 comments

    • I think we’ve talked about this: I think there should be a lens selections in Phototools and in the LL viewer (shutter speed and ISO would be nice, too.). Right now, you have the elements to define a lens, but not too many people, even rl photographers, are going to understand how to do that. I had to figure it out on my own.

      Thank you for reading my post. : )

      Liked by 1 person

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