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Summer Bokeh Dog Portraits

Welcome to Week 31 of our 52 Week Pet Photography Blog Circle.  This week’s topic is a favorite of mine:  “Bokeh”!

What is “bokeh”?

It is defined as “the blurred quality or effect seen in the out-of-focus portion of a photograph taken with a narrow depth of field”

How does one create this effect and the beauty of it?  I found a nice and simple description from Luvo Photography:

There are three simple rules that can be applied to create bokeh:

  1. Use a large aperture
  2. Use a focal length longer than 35mm on a crop camera and 50mm on a full frame camera
  3. The subject you are focusing on should be close to the camera, and the background far away.

Much of my photography style consists of shooting with a larger aperture – between f/2 and f/2.8.  My favorite lens in the bag is my Canon 135 mm – i love the dreamy bokeh that can be obtained from f/2 – f/2.5. I’m known for doing entire sessions with this lens – why not?

My favorite time time for photo sessions is early AM or in the evening – golden hour – when that beautiful light is shining!  

I thought I’d share some summer pups with dreamy backgrounds of “bokeh”.  

First up is Kota. This image is from the beginning of summer with the lovely red blooms in our backyard.  All of these images were taken with the 135mm lens.  This image at f/2.5.

Kota bokeh blog

The next image was a new location for me!  Meet handsome Berner, Buckley, at Dunstable rural land forest.  His mom is starting up a dog walk business and we worked on images for her website.  This  was take at f/2.5 – summer green bokeh!  

Portrait of Bernese Mountain Dog

Another new location this month!  This is Emily at Endicott Park.  She’s just a puppy and such a star model!  I was fortunate to meet her in dog training classes this summer.  The background was a pond and the light shining on the water with the wild flowers created this beautiful backdrop.  

Emily Bokeh Blog

Next up is stunning Gracie, the Wolfhound Mix that I met up with this week at one of my favorite spots, Zorvino Vineyards.  The flowers were stunning and made for “painterly” backdrops at golden hour.  This image was taken at f/2.2.  Doesn’t she have amazing ears?

Gracie Bokeh Blog

Thank  you so much for stopping by this weeks blog post!  It is a circle, so click on each link to see beautiful bokeh from amazing pet photographer’s around the world!  Next up is the amazing Pet Love Photography, serving Greater Cincinnati, the San Francisco Bay Area, and destinations nationwide.  Thanks for stopping by and  have a wonderful weekend!  

9 thoughts on “Summer Bokeh Dog Portraits”

  1. I love these images Darlene, they are gorgeous and the colours so rich! They have also pushed me a little closer towards seriously considering the 135mm which Charlotte Reeves also raves about.

  2. Great quick explanation of bokeh. I know you really love the 135mm. My main lens also was the 135mm. All the shots are excellent with beautiful colors.

  3. I am so jealous of your vineyard location! The colors always look so great there – terrific bokeh through out. I tried the 135mm lens, but felt it was redundant to my 70-200mm which never leaves one of my camera bodies now!

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