Verdict: 5 stars Analog Efex Pro2 goes way beyond most analog photography filters, offering not just film styles, grain effects and borders, but creative vignetting, bokeh, lens blur, lens distortion, double-exposures, motion blur and more.
'Bokeh' is a Japanese word that describes the particular visual quality of out of focus areas on a picture. Bokeh fans will wax lyrical about the background rendering of certain lenses, while sceptics will wonder what all the fuss is about. It all depends on how sensitive you are to the nuances of images.
So although 'bokeh' is technically about how out-of-focus areas look, the word has been hijacked somewhat to mean anything that's out of focus – so there are image effect plug-ins like Analog Efex Pro, for example, that offer a 'bokeh' filter for making backgrounds blurred and concentrating attention on the main subject.
There's nothing wrong with that and it's a perfectly valid digital technique that can make a photo really effective. Really, it's a depth of field effect rather than 'bokeh', but the word seems to have stuck now so many people think it means the same thing.
Modern cameras can reproduce the world with utter, clinical accuracy. The trouble is, it turns out that’s not what we wanted after all. A lot of the time, what we actually want is the faded, distressed, imperfect look of analog photography. So here are six top tips for getting that analog film effect ‘look’ with […]
MacPhun Focus 2 Pro does the same job as a number of other digital ‘bokeh’ filters. It lets you selectively defocus parts of the image to create a shallow depth of field effect. This can work well with portraits, where it can blur cluttered backgrounds, and you can use it with high-angle shots that look […]
It’s easy to get shallow depth of field with a camera. You just need a camera with a large sensor, and a lens with a large maximum aperture and the laws of physics do the rest. But adding depth of field digitally is trickier, so let’s see if a filter designed specifically to do this […]
Analog Efex Pro is a brand new addition to the Google Nik Collection, the set of plug-ins for Photoshop, Elements, Lightroom and Aperture that Google took over when it bought out Nik Software. It’s now been taken over by DxO. I rate this as the best set of plug-ins ever made, and practically a must-have […]
Focal Point 2 is part of OnOne Perfect Photo Suite. It’s designed to replicate the shallow depth of field effects associated with wide lens apertures and the changing focus planes of tilt shift lenses, using one or more ‘Focus Bugs’ and manual ‘focus painting’ brush tools. More than that, though, it’s designed to help you […]