How to Fix Blurry Pictures
April 22, 2014
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When you come across that perfect shot, it's easy to get caught up in the moment and instinctively reach for the shutter button. Click, click, click! But what if your images turn out blurry? Use the following tips to learn how to fix blurry pictures and stop them from happening in the first place:
Use the Shutter Button Correctly
When using the autofocus feature on your camera, engage it. If you simply press the shutter button, the autofocus feature isn't necessarily active, especially after a period of inactivity.
Lightly press the shutter button down halfway until you see the camera autofocusing points illuminate in the viewfinder. These are usually represented by dots or tiny squares. Once the autofocus point illuminates over the subject, press the button down all the way to take an in-focus picture.
The Downside of Slow Shutter Speeds
Getting great scenic images in the evening or a creative, artistic blur with lights at night requires a slow shutter speed. But if the shutter speed drops too low — beyond what you can handhold without detecting motion from your hands — the images will be out of focus.
The solution? Bracket. This means taking several shots with a variety of slow shutter speeds so you can choose the best exposure later. For example, try these shutter speeds: 1/60, 1/30 and 1/15.
Depth of Field Affects Focus
When you want your subject to pop and be the main focus of a picture, it's easy to set the lens to have a shallow depth of field (DOF). Shooting at an aperture of f/2 or f/4 with a telephoto lens creates a soft, blurred background. But, if you zoom too much or use a wide aperture opening, the majority of your image may look blurry.
Instead, shoot with a shorter lens such as 180 mm lens instead of a 300 mm lens. Close down the aperture a little to f/5.6 or f/8 to get more DOF or sharpness throughout the picture.
Stabilize the Camera
Whether you're using a slow shutter speed, have shaky hands or shoot with a shallow DOF, it's best to stabilize the camera to avoid blur. If you need to stay mobile, use a monopod for support. For stationary shoots, a tripod works well. A steady camera produces sharper pictures.
Use ISO Settings Effectively
Sometimes, a blurry picture isn't due to movement in the scene. It can also be due to a slow film speed equivalent (ISO) setting on the camera itself. ISO settings of 1,600, 3,200 or 6,400 are grainier and less sharp than lower settings.
Reduce this soft focusing effect by choosing a lower ISO such as 400 or 800. The lower the ISO number, the sharper the image will appear.
Do you have a foolproof tip for getting sharp pictures every time you click the shutter button? Have you learned how to fix blurry pictures through trial and error? Let us know in the comments below!
Photo credit: freeimages