How To Blur a Photo Background in Photoshop (Shallow Depth of Field Effect)

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In today’s Photoshop tutorial I’m going to show you an effective trick to create a fake shallow depth-of-field, blurred background effect, which helps give your photos that beautiful large aperture look that draws your attention to the subject while everything else is out of focus.
To achieve the effect for real you would shoot with a fast lens with a low F-stop, but you can fake the appearance, or enhance the existing depth of field in a photo using some simple Photoshop tools.

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16 thoughts on “How To Blur a Photo Background in Photoshop (Shallow Depth of Field Effect)

  1. Hi. Great video. It’s so helpful. I have a question, when I am about to finish the tilt blur, it’s looks good but when I hit ok to save, it the blue is not on the entire photo as previously. It only blurs out around the subject. Am I missing a step?

  2. Liked the Soft Light trick to add a subtle bloom of light over the image (sampling colour from the subject's highlights)!

  3. How did the content aware fill work? How could PS fill the girl, what am I missing? Awesome tips here Chris love your work.

  4. Thank you for doing what Adobe cannot. You bring a simple "let's do this" approach to learning how these tools actually work best, and it has had an impact on my work. "Sure I know how to cut a person out of a background, I've been doing it for 20 years. Wait, what? Oh I didn't know THAT. Or THAT. Or THAT." Well, now I know how to do it better. Wow.

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