This project involves using an out of focus foreground to enhance an image, sounds simple enough but I have produced images on a few separate occasions to fit this project and have found that whilst its easy enough to have an out of focus foreground it often creates a sense of unease that doesn’t necessarily enhance the image.
The first one I took was on a recent visit to Blackpool for the portfolio, I thought the brightly coloured coat of this lady would make a good focal point for the image. I then waited for a vehicle to pass to create my out of focus foreground:
Next (and with their permission) a couple of images of friends and fellow students Fiona and Jeff, here I used an out of focus foreground to explain the surroundings (a coffee shop):
And yet another one where the foreground makes the image feel intrusive :
This week I finally managed to get a shot where the out of focus foreground enhances the image without making it feel uncomfortable, I had been asked to photograph the opening of a newly refurbished studio at the local community radio station and I managed to get this candid image of the mayor:
In this instance I feel the foreground helps to add context to the surroundings without adding the feeling of discomfort that exists in the other images. I think this is partly due to the fact that I am closer and maybe also because I am on the same level.
So, in conclusion, it’s very easy to create an out of focus foreground but it can often add tension to the image, obviously this could well be the intention but if not its a technique that needs to be used carefully.