Brenizer’s "Bokeh Panoramic" Method

 It’s always interesting to find a “new” photographic technique to experiment with. This one, which I accidentally stumbled upon, comes from New York wedding photographer called Ryan Brenizer. Combining the use of a wide-open bokeh-inducing aperture with panoramic techniques he has derived a unique image style which has been called “bokeh panoramic” or more commonly called the “Brenizer Method”.
 The basic premise of this technique is the ability to have a very shallow depth of field in a wide panoramic view, something even beyond the physical capabilities of a wide angle lens. By using a longer fast lens the technique requires you to shoot a number of overlapping frames which are then stitched together to create the final image. The camera should be set at manual and with a large wide-open aperture such as 1.4 or 1.2 to minimize the depth of field and maximize bokeh. Focus of course will be set on the main subject and fixed to manual for all the shots. It is also important to set the white balance manually or in my case I always take RAW images so the white balance can be adjusted for all the images in post.
So for the first example I took a set of 35 individual images in my small garden at home with a 85mm lens set manually at f/1.2 and 1/500 at ISO 100, AWB and manual focused on the central plant stand. It is good to firstly take the frames around the focal point of the photograph or the area where there is perhaps going to be movement between frames (e.g. if there is a person or persons in the frame) and then fill out the frames around the periphery.  It is a good idea to make sure you have plenty of overlap (25%+) between individual images taking note mentally before you start shooting of the total area you need to cover for the final panorama to ensure you fill out the image to all the corners.

The 35 images were then imported into Aperture for some minor post-processing such as setting a fixed white balance, adjusting exposure and some minor sharpening for all images.


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35 frames imported into Aperture for post-processing

The images were then exported as jpegs into a folder. The 35 jpeg images were then imported into AutopanoPro, stitched together and cropped into the final large panorama.

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AutopanoPro used to stitch all the individual images into one panorama


Below is another example taken indoors, this time a total of 25 images inside my house, taken with a 50mm lens set at f/1.4 and 1/90, AWB and focus set manually.

Again the images were post-processed in Aperture to set the white balance the same for all images as well as making some minor adjustment to exposure and do some sharpening. Images were output into AutopanoPro and stitched together and cropped to make the final square image as below.
 [Group 1]-IMG_0482_IMG_0505-23 images


The images produced by this technique produce have a wonderful ethereal feel with soft bokeh and narrow depth of field which immediately draws the viewer to the focal point of choice. For photographers like Ryan Brenizer his focal point will of course be the wedding couple. So for all you wedding photographers out there this could be a great new technique to add to your portfolio of tricks and offer the bridal couple something a little special!

These two examples I tried were done very quickly but the effect is dramatic. With practice you should be able to perfect this technique and add this to your portfolio to produce large panoramic images with narrow depths of field which would not be possible with a wide angle conventional lens.

Check out Ryan’s website where he explains his technique and you can have the opportunity to see some wonderful examples of this technique.


Passionate Photographer …. Lost in Asia

Stuart Taylor of HighlanderImages Photography has been making images for over 25 years and can offer a diverse range of photo imaging services with a focus on Asia and a documentary/photojournalistic style. These services include planning and executing a photo shoot on location but importantly all the post-processing and image preparation needed for the specific finished media format required by the customer. Stuart’s experience and knowledge in all of these aspects makes HighlanderImages Photography a one-stop-shop for a comprehensive and professional image production service.

Stuart can be available for a variety individual assignments or projects and he specialises in areas such as photojournalism, commercial, architectural, real estate, industrial, interior design, corporate, urbex, adventure, wilderness and travel photography. Stuart can also offer some innovative and advanced techniques such as HDR (High Dynamic Range) and Panoramic Photography.

Final image products can be delivered as high resolution images, prints, books, multimedia slideshows, videos and DVDs. Images from this website can be purchased as prints in a variety of sizes and media, as gift items or as digital downloads.

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