How to Blur your Image with Your Awesome Subject in Focus

Tips on how to blur your image keeping the focal point in focus.

In this video, I share a question I had from Debbie about blurring my background in the flower shot below.  I share the Gaussian blur tool but this technique can be used with any blur tool you’d like to. Before we start you’ll need to be able to work with a program that has layers and masks. Today I’m using Photoshop.

Steps:

Make a copy of your layer with the image on it. Duplicate the first layer 2 times.

Rename layers so you don’t get confused.

Use your favorite selection tool and select the main focal point or everything that you don’t want to have a blur.

Go to layer>layer mask>reveal a selection.

Double click on your mask and click on ‘Select and Mask’.

Clean up the mask.  Take your time this is important.

Before you click ok make sure that you have the output settings on Layer Mask.  See the video above for more details in this area:


TIP: Fix any spots in your mask (if needed).  Only have the layer selected that has the mask on it.  Click alt/option use your brush tool to remove white spots that you missed, click alt/option to get back to where you were.


If you do the steps above make sure you add all of the eyes back to each layer so we can use them.

Now select the Blur layer by clicking on it.  You’re going to select your main subject again.  This doesn’t need to be perfect.

Click Edit > Fill > Content Aware Fill

 

 

Now it’s time to play with your Blur Tools

Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur  (but again you can use any of the blur tools)


Adjust your radius in the popup and push ok.

Next, deselect the marching ants control/command “D” if they’re still around.

Now click on the top layer and BAM! You now know how to blur your image with your awesome subject in focus! Congratulations you did it!  I knew you could 😉

If you have questions feel free to ask below.

Cheers,

Janice

 

Janice Sullivan

Owner - Photographer at Sullivan J Photography
Janice Sullivan is a Fine Art Photographer who specializes in Macro, Landscape Imagery.When Janice isn’t out photographing, she is working on her membership program.Janice’s work has been published in a variety of publications and has her work in hotels and restaurants around the United States and Canada.

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