Experiments with the Brenizer Panoramic method

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I'm having fun experimenting with Brenizer bokeh panoramas.

At last weekend's photo meetup I met a wedding photographer, Chris, who introduced me to a technique for creating bokeh panoramas. The technique is called the Brenizer method after it's "creator", wedding photographer Ryan Brenizer. The idea is simple but the results are challenging to achieve.

So what is it?

For those who may or may not have heard of it and are not sure of what this technique is exactly, it’s essentially using a telephoto lens to create a very shallow depth of field as if shot with a wider angle lens. This technique makes a dSLR image look like it was shot by medium format.Bui Photos

Of course when I learn a new photographic technique I have to immediately immerse myself in it. So I've been experiment with 12-16 images panoramas shot with my AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.8.

I've read -- and seen -- that the results are better when photographing people but that will have to wait until my results improve. In the meantime I'm having fun creating 20-30MP images from my Nikon D5100.

For these images, I set my 85mm to f/1.8. The Nikon D5100 is a DX camera, meaning it has an APS-C sensor with a 1.5 crop factor. My 85mm f/1.8 will produce results similar to a 127mm f/2.7 on full frame 35mm DSLR.

I panned around the subjects trying to capture the area around the subject. I think I used 12 images for the photo of the smoker and 16 for the "red shrub". I used Photoshop to import and auto-merge the images. This took about 30 seconds on my 3.4GHz iMac. Having 32GB of RAM helps a lot!

If you click over to Flickr, you'll see that the final cropped image of the red shrub is 9508 x 6303 pixels. The image of the smoker is 11070 x 4879 pixels!

Brenizer Panoramic Graveyard
Brenizer Panoramic Graveyard
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Author: Khürt Williams

I work in application security architecture and I live in Montgomery Township, New Jersey with my wife Bhavna. Passionate about photography, you’ll find me writing about cybersecurity, tropical aquariums, terrariums, hiking, craft breweries, and capturing birds on camera. My prose is like a caffeinated squirrel—fast, unpredictable, and occasionally insightful.