Christmas Tree Shapes - Fun with Bokeh

Are you looking for a fun little project that will wow your kids this holiday? They will love making shapes with Christmas tree bokeh, and you will too! We have a quick and easy DIY tutorial for you to follow along with. 

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1. Create the Design

First you need to create your design. Start by cutting a circle the size of your lens out of black construction paper. You can start by tracing your lens cap.



Now, cut out your circle as well as cutting out a small design in the middle. It can be any shape you like, such as a heart, star, tree - anything! Your kids will love coming up with different ideas.

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Next, carefully place the paper onto your lens, making sure it is secure from any light leaks. I left a tab on my circle so that it is easy to remove, but you can also tape it down.


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Now you are ready to shoot! Lets get into the shooting settings.

2. Choose a Low Aperture

First you need to begin with a low aperture to get a bokeh affect, begin with around 1.8. I suggest shooting with a prime lens, such as a 50mm.

3. Shutter Speed and ISO

You will need a slow shutter speed and high ISO as you are limiting the amount of light getting into your lens, and your room will probably be fairly dark. You can also shoot on aperture priority mode.

4. Distance from Subject

If you would like shapes to appear behind a subject, make sure there is enough distance between them and the tree. 

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My settings for this image were F/1.8, 1/125, ISO 6400 with a 50mm on a Nikon D750. There will be a natural vignette effect to your images, so don't worry about that.

5. Manually Focus

If you do not want a subject in your photo and just the tree, the lights will have to be out of focus. Purposely manually focus your shot so that it is out of focus and your shot will end up like this. 

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There you have it, our simple guide to creating fun shapes with Christmas tree bokeh! This effect can also work on any other bokeh, so have fun and experiment. We would love to see your results so make sure you share with us on Facebook,  Pinterest or Instagram. Happy Shooting xx

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