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Old November 9th, 2002, 12:02 AM   #1
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How to get a blurry effect?

I see a lot of commercials with a blurry side of the screen effect. Is this a filter or something done in post? Is there such a filter that can do this?

Sometimes, it only has the center in focus and the outer ring is blurry

thanks!
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Old November 9th, 2002, 12:10 AM   #2
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This is almost certainly always an effect produced during post-production using a simple mask overlay or a matte. You could also accomplish this by blurring part of a clear filter but such a technique would be far less flexible and more of a production hassle than simply using your nle or a product like AfterEffects.
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Old November 9th, 2002, 12:20 AM   #3
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If you're using Final Cut Pro, there's a very inexpensive set of filters I use called "Joe's Filters" that have various blurring methods. I used the center spot blur in a short film that I'm finishing up now. You can see what he has to offer at

http://www.joemaller.com/fcp/joes_filters.shtml
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Old November 9th, 2002, 12:39 AM   #4
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Nice filter set, John. Sold!
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Old November 9th, 2002, 02:25 AM   #5
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Thanks alot!

I got another question for you guys if you dont mind?

1- If I wanted a very bright look (like over exposed light in film) what kind of a filter would I need? And what would that do to the subjects in the shot?

Example- A man opens a garage door and I want the sunlight to appear as a white light and then a truck or vehicle will come from the light and drive into the garage

thanks again!
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Old November 9th, 2002, 10:51 AM   #6
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My first inclination in this case is to shoot the scene for this effect by overexposing the garage door as it's opening.
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Old November 9th, 2002, 02:09 PM   #7
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The original question referred to having partial amounts of the image in focus--this may be a post effect as described here, but the effect is also often achieved using a swing and tilt system. This is a device that allows the lens to be shifted around in various axis including one side away from the lens mount, which moves the focal plane from being parallel to the film plane or CCD to cutting diagonally through it. The result is a range of focus in the image. You can see this used theatrically in the opening scene of "Swordfish". The effect was popular in commercials six or seven years ago, when every closeup of a face had one eye in focus and the other out, or the eyes in focus and the mouth out. It's a cumbersome system, probably easier to regulate as a post effect, but there is a difference in the results.
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Old November 9th, 2002, 03:55 PM   #8
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It depends on what you want to do. You could make the adjustments in post, or you could try some of the filters available that might achieve the same look.
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Old November 10th, 2002, 01:20 AM   #9
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Nathan, what type of filters would do this? Im clueless when it comes to filters and the different effects they can create.

Also, what part of louisiana is that?
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Old November 10th, 2002, 08:22 PM   #10
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Blur Effect

Gateway. What specific commercial(s) are you referring to?
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Old November 10th, 2002, 11:03 PM   #11
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Hmmm, I cant think of a national spot right now that uses this effect. Do you not understand the effect that I'm asking about?
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Old November 11th, 2002, 08:24 PM   #12
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Blur effect

No, I can't recall an effect where the subject is in focus and the background or half the screen is blurred. The only thing that I can think of is that they were shooting the subject with a longer than normal lens throwing the background out and if the subject was screen right or left it would appear that half was blurred. It's possible that you saw a radial blur which is similar to a center spot filter described in an above post. This appears as if you were looking down a frosted glass tube that is slowly stretching. As soon as you can give me an example I bet I can help you. I have done quite a bit with the identity blur/mosaic where the blur is keyframed and tracks the face of the subject.
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Old November 11th, 2002, 08:42 PM   #13
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Gateway (wish I had a real name to call you),

I think you may be talking about a bifocal (split-field) diopter. Very common in films from the 60s and 70s, but not as widely used today. They work just like bifocal lenses...and left a distinct line through the center of the shot. Is that right?
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Old November 12th, 2002, 12:17 AM   #14
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I have made some frame grabs of some spots I shot for a TV news station a number of years ago utilizing the swing and tilt lenses I described earlier in this thread. With any luck they will illustrate the sort of effect Gateway is describing!

I have asked one of my fellow moderators to put them up on the web for any interested party's perusal.

Note that with the two shots of the newscasters, their right shoulders are out of focus while their left shoulders are sharp--the eyes are in focus, the left side of the hair is out. In the picture of the switcher, the left side of the frame is obviously softer than it would normally be considering it is in essentially the same plane as the rest of the board.

These were not manipulated in post, they were generated as in-camera effects using the swing and tilt lenses.

Gateway, is this what you are talking about??
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Old November 12th, 2002, 02:01 AM   #15
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Gateway,

I've posted the photos that Charles mentions at

http://zchildress.com/swing-and-tilt
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