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Background Blur With Sony Z3

There’s some great apps available, especially on iOS, that allow you to blur the background of an image after it has been taken. With the Android powered Screenshot_2014-12-08-10-07-25Sony Z3 I was pleasantly surprised to find that this option was built into one of it’s many camera apps.

Some of these apps have, for me at least, a novelty value, but being able to blur the background and simulate a shallow depth of field is a must. Adding the blur draws attention to the area in the foreground and dramatically alters the overall feel to an image.

The background to these tiny shoes for example is unimportant and the softness lends itself well to the image. In fact, the background in this case is part of a garden shed.



Sony achieve the effect by taking two photographs and blurring one. Then it pops the un-blurred image on top with just the selected area in focus. Thee’s some amazing algorithms at work here and for the most part it works very well.

First you’re asked to select what will be in focus. A simple tap does the trick here.


Once selected it’s time to hold still and fire the shutter. The camera takes the two shots and pops them together, but then there’s a choice;


The direction of the blur, left / right, up / down or lens blur. in this case, I chose the lens blur. I rarely use any other setting. The arc allows you to change the amount of blur, a really nice feature. Finally the tick to accept and save the changes.

Heres the finished image after editing in Snapseed;






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