Monday, July 6, 2009

so what is lens flare, anyway?

back lighting

Lens flare is defined as "light that doesn’t belong in an image, often taking the shape of the aperture, generally caused by shooting towards the light source." Or see the above image.

Most articles I've read on lens flare describe it as a nuisance, a mistake of the novice photographer, something to be avoided.

I love it - as if you haven't already guessed that from the title of this blog. I especially love lens flare when it doesn't overpower the overall image, and when it's not obvious that it was added via photoshop (but that's just my opinion). It can be a dreamy effect.

Not a lot of advice on how to actually create lens flare in your photos - I usually shoot into my light source to try and achieve it. I also look for the sun peeking through trees, above the roof, etc. Like this photo:

sunny days

or this one:

security pacific bank building

And in the interest of being an equal opportunity teacher:

Click here for a tutorial on using a low aperture setting to achieve lens flare.

Click here for a tutorial on how to eliminate lens flare in your photos.