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Old Feb 22, 2011, 11:22 PM   #1
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Default Fz40 Question.

Hi everyone! I just got my fz40 today. So i am a newbie. Can someone please tell me what setting i use to take a portrait picture and have the background blurred??

Thanks!
Tabatha
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Old Feb 23, 2011, 1:11 AM   #2
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Hi There

If you use the "A" setting (aperture), then you will be able to change this setting to give you the desired blurred background. The lowest number ie f2.8 will give you the burriest background. For further info Sarah Joyce has written a short guide and published it here. She is fantastic, a real mine of info, so hopefully she will contribute to this thread. Unfortunately I am not an expert, but hope this helps in the meantime - Look forward to seeing the shots - Dyane
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Old Feb 23, 2011, 2:00 AM   #3
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Just don't expect a huge amount of blurred background - the camera has great manual control, but it has a very small sensor (which enables the huge zoom) and that means the aperture is equivalent to a larger aperture on an SLR etc.

You can get a blurred background, but you have to work at it:
- Background a long way behind the subject
- Widest aperture setting (smallest f number)
- Maximum zoom
- Camera close to subject

Some of these things play against each other; if you zoom in and move close to your portrait subject, you'll fill the frame with the tip of their nose! And the more you zoom, the higher the minimum aperture available (which will rule out f/2.8). But the more you experiment, the more it will make sense.
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Old Feb 23, 2011, 4:27 AM   #4
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I'm not entirely sure if it is also for the fz40 (it is for my fz38), but when you zoom and auto focus, it can have trouble with finding the focus when your to close to the subject. If you manual focus you can get a closer focus point then auto focus and thus you'll be able to come even closer, but that will probably end in a nicely blurred background and only an eye or an ear of the subject.

Blur is one of those things that are really hard to get with the fz38 (guess that is also the fact for fz40), I'm still working on it, will post some results, when there will be ><
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Old Feb 23, 2011, 11:11 AM   #5
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Welcome Tabatha-

We're delighted that you dropped by the Panasonic P+S folder. We are a welcoming, helpful, and friendly group, so please make yourself comfortable.

A consistently blurred background, such as the kind that you often find in portraits is really a feature unique to DSLR cameras that have much larger imagers than the Panasonic FZ40. As Mick, Rafal, and Dyane have mentioned, a blurred background, it is also a function of wide aperture.

The imager used on your new FZ40 is 15X to 21X times smaller in size than the imager size found on even entry level DSLR cameras. That smaller imager makes the long zoom possible, while at the same time providing a far greater measure of depth of field, where many object in the photo are all in focus.

You will occasionally be able to get a blurred back ground with your FZ40, but it is not a sure bet and it is as Mick detailed quite well a function of subject placement within the camera's field of view. However, you can get a consistent blurred background, if you are willing to do some post processing of your photos with a good editor like Photoshop Elements version 6.0 and above. I have attached a sample to show you what post processioning the background looks like.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Feb 23, 2011, 11:14 AM   #6
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Tabatha-

Here is another informal portrait sample for you. This has no post processing involved, but instead uses a very even background that achieves just about the same effect.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Feb 23, 2011, 4:20 PM   #7
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Ohh.. okay, I see. Well i have managed to get some blurred bkgrnd but like yall said it was just something that happened to happen...lol
i want to upload a pic i took can ya tell me how to do that?
Thanks

Tabatha
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Old Feb 23, 2011, 4:43 PM   #8
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G'day Tabatha

Several answers for you -
2nd Q first ... there are many 'free-of-charge' photo upload sites, I use "tinypic.com" for unimportant images and (although their security code stuff is a bummer at times) it is easy enough for you to do it. Once the image is uploaded there is a box called "IMG Code for Forums & Message Boards" displayed

Use 'Ctrl C' to copy all the stuff in that box into your Forum message - on a new line with a blank line below it too
For example, here is an image ...


and here is the funny-looking code in the above-mentioned box
{IMG}http://i51.tinypic.com/vfa5jq.jpg{IMG}

And to answer your 1st Q now - you can get nice & blurry backgrounds (see above) with your FZ-40 ... and easily too !!!

The above pic was taken at about 12x - 14x zoom, camera to subject distance about 5metres (15ft) and the background was about 10m/30ft behind the subject. Camera was set to "Program"

Hope this helps a bit
Regards, Phil
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Old Feb 23, 2011, 5:04 PM   #9
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Wow Great! Thanks for all your help. I will remember that.
Now i have another question if thats ok, I seen a guide saying to use the point focus, but I cant enable it. I put camera in P mode then go to menu and go to page 2 of REC and the AF MODE is grayed out and wont let me do anything with it. What am I doing wrong?
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Old Feb 23, 2011, 5:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jerryandtabatha View Post
Wow Great! Thanks for all your help. I will remember that.
Now i have another question if thats ok, I seen a guide saying to use the point focus, but I cant enable it. I put camera in P mode then go to menu and go to page 2 of REC and the AF MODE is grayed out and wont let me do anything with it. What am I doing wrong?
Make sure the camera isn't in Manual Focus mode by pressing the AF/AF (flower)/MF button on the back.
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