A fast lens, large aperture, and some healthy dose of creativity are what you're going to need for this contest. Because this contest is all about bokeh!

Bokeh comes from the Japanese word "boke", which means "blur". In photography, this means that your subject should be focused and the background should be blurry. The more light that your camera lens lets in, the blurrier the background can be.

You can achieve this effect with most modern lenses, without the need for post-processing. The bokeh effect itself cannot be created by post-processing an image. It has to be done through your camera.

11 years ago we had a bokeh contest on Pxleyes, which was won by 'Perathor'

By Perathor
— By Perathor —

Bokeh is often used for portrait photography, but you can use it with any photo you like. 'Swirl bokeh' or other variants are also allowed in this contest.

If you don't know what bokeh is yet, have a look at this explanation video.

Here are some tutorials to get you started:

Good luck!

PS: It's very important to vote on every entry, the more votes we get, the more accurate the rankings will be. Also, when you see something on someone's entry that can be improved, let them know. That way, we can learn new skills from each other!

ENTRIES
Vibeke avatarLevel 10Gold awardGold award
70%
1 out of 43

Waxeye on a frosty morning. created by Vibeke

8 reactions
Olga.L avatarLevel 16
Olga.L

Congratulations on first two spots! I loved this shot, it's great.

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
Zizounai

So cute, don't hesitate to watch it big. Beautiful.

Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke replied to Zizounai :

Thank you Zizounai

IEatRawEggs avatarLevel 16
IEatRawEggs

Congratulations on the 2 top spots!

Skyangel avatarLevel 14
Skyangel

Congratulations on 1st and second Vibeke

Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke replied to Skyangel :

Thank you Skyangel

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
Zizounai

Congrats ๐Ÿ˜Š

Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke replied to Zizounai :

Thank you

Vibeke avatarLevel 10Silver award
68%
2 out of 43

Agapanthus created by Vibeke

1/125 at f5.6 ISO 200

2 reactions
Olga.L avatarLevel 16
Olga.L

A lovely catch of Agapanthus with little brother in the background. The bokeh overwhelms the image and feels like a distraction. BUT you did get great natural saturation on the flower and that catches the eye. This feels like a thoughtful shot, well composed and framed.

Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke replied to Olga.L :

Thank you Olga

Olga.L avatarLevel 16Bronze awardSilver award
68%
3 out of 43

Bokeh Berries created by Olga.L

8 reactions
Zizounai avatarLevel 15Happy award
Zizounai

Wow, what are these berries? Looks like a fairytale ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

IEatRawEggs avatarLevel 16
IEatRawEggs

Congratulations on the third spot!

Olga.L avatarLevel 16
Olga.L replied to IEatRawEggs :

Awww eggs you are such an omelet...adorable.

Skyangel avatarLevel 14
Skyangel

Congratulations on 3rd Olga.

Olga.L avatarLevel 16
Olga.L replied to Skyangel :

Danke ๐Ÿ˜

Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke

Nice

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
Zizounai

Congrats Olga ๐Ÿ˜Š So... what are these fabulous berries??? Will they make you shrink or grow up???

Olga.L avatarLevel 16
Olga.L replied to Zizounai :

I have no idea,but they are Japanese๐Ÿ˜Š

Olga.L avatarLevel 16
66%
4 out of 43

Autumnal Bokeh created by Olga.L

1 reaction
Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke

Beautiful

Vibeke avatarLevel 10
65%
5 out of 43

Tiny rose buds created by Vibeke

MyMindsEye avatarLevel 9
64%
6 out of 43

Fine Dining created by MyMindsEye

Vibeke avatarLevel 10
62%
7 out of 43

Magenta flowers on an autumn day. created by Vibeke

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
62%
8 out of 43

Foxglove created by Zizounai

2 reactions
Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke

Lovely

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
Zizounai replied to Vibeke :

Thank you Vibeke.

Olga.L avatarLevel 16
62%
9 out of 43

Bokeh in Monochrome created by Olga.L

1 reaction
Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke

Well done

kyricom avatarLevel 13
61%
10 out of 43

Fly By created by kyricom

A Dragonfly coming right at us.

3 reactions
Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke

Well done catching it in flight, they move so quickly.

kyricom avatarLevel 13
kyricom replied to Vibeke :

There was a kind of "path" between a couple of bushes that they were zooming through all day. I waited at one end and took a bunch in burst mode as they came through and luckily got this one in nice focus.

Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke replied to kyricom :

Great idea, and well done.

Rajat avatarLevel 5
61%
11 out of 43

Garden Spider created by Rajat

MacroShot of Garden Spider Shot on iphone+lens

Olga.L avatarLevel 16
61%
12 out of 43

Awash in Yellow created by Olga.L

Olga.L avatarLevel 16
61%
13 out of 43

Lotus Haven created by Olga.L

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
60%
14 out of 43

Cotinis nitida, the Green June Beetle created by Zizounai

Skyangel avatarLevel 14
60%
15 out of 43

Botanical Bokeh created by Skyangel

Butterfly captured at the Botanical gardens.

Loren avatarLevel 5
60%
16 out of 43

Wild Red Fruit created by Loren

Loren avatarLevel 5
60%
17 out of 43

Hanging Droplets created by Loren

hanging droplets

kyricom avatarLevel 13
59%
18 out of 43

Cornflower created by kyricom

Starting to get old as autumn approaches.

2 reactions
grasshopper1 avatarLevel 11
grasshopper1

Yeah...I kind of feel the same way...getting old and have lost a few of my petals.

kyricom avatarLevel 13
kyricom replied to grasshopper1 :

I hear ya :-)

Wayne-Cheah avatarLevel 11
58%
19 out of 43

Fountain of Youth created by Wayne-Cheah

3 reactions
Olga.L avatarLevel 16
Olga.L

Crystal clear and well focused. You have a slight anomaly in the upper mid R (viewer's R) ...looks like a hair/wire...could be on your sensor. Gentle bokeh gives us the feeling of gurgling waters. Nicely shot and well composed ....artistically composed.

Wayne-Cheah avatarLevel 11
Wayne-Cheah replied to Olga.L :

Thanks for the comment. I really didn't notice the "anomaly" until now. Every time I looked at the image, my eyes were always focused on the water because it is the only "sharp" thing there.

Olga.L avatarLevel 16
Olga.L replied to Wayne-Cheah :

Except for that anomaly๐Ÿ˜‰

Merlin avatarLevel 15
58%
20 out of 43

LOTUS seed created by Merlin

ISO125 --- 1/320ย sec. --- 46,2ย mm --- NO post-processed Bokeh ๐Ÿ˜‰ Natural shot: NO modern lense ๐Ÿ˜‰

1 reaction
Merlin avatarLevel 15
Merlin

๐Ÿ˜“

Vibeke avatarLevel 10
58%
21 out of 43

Nameless picture created by Vibeke

Macro, f8 at 1/350s ISO 100

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
58%
22 out of 43

Trollius europaeus created by Zizounai

Also called globeflower...

2 reactions
Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke

Well done

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
Zizounai replied to Vibeke :

Thanks.

MyMindsEye avatarLevel 9
57%
23 out of 43

Amethyst created by MyMindsEye

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
57%
24 out of 43

A butterfly told me... created by Zizounai

Merlin avatarLevel 15
56%
25 out of 43

Bud created by Merlin

ISO125 --- 1/640sec --- 42,4ย mm --- NO post-processed Bokeh ๐Ÿ˜‰ Natural shot: NO modern lense ๐Ÿ˜‰

1 reaction
Merlin avatarLevel 15
Merlin

๐Ÿ˜“

kyricom avatarLevel 13
56%
26 out of 43

Needs Practice Casting created by kyricom

grasshopper1 avatarLevel 11
55%
27 out of 43

Bathroom Orchids created by grasshopper1

Taken with a Blackberry DTEK60 phone.

aipics avatarLevel 7
55%
28 out of 43

Bugs created by aipics

Wayne-Cheah avatarLevel 11
53%
29 out of 43

White Hibiscus created by Wayne-Cheah

MyMindsEye avatarLevel 9
53%
30 out of 43

While you were out..... created by MyMindsEye

Web in the grass

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
52%
31 out of 43

Pear tree blossom created by Zizounai

Rajat avatarLevel 5
52%
32 out of 43

Laughing Dove created by Rajat

Nikond3300 70-300mm Birds_photography

1 reaction
Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke

These contests are anonymous, watermarks not allowed.

Rajat avatarLevel 5
51%
33 out of 43

Red-vented Bulbul created by Rajat

Nikond3300 70-300mm Birds_photography

1 reaction
Vibeke avatarLevel 10
Vibeke

These contests are anonymous, watermarks not allowed.

kyricom avatarLevel 13
51%
34 out of 43

Bokeh Bird created by kyricom

1 reaction
Skyangel avatarLevel 14
Skyangel

The bokeh is lovely but you have purple chromatic aberation around the bird. You can fix that by desaturating that color.

MyMindsEye avatarLevel 9
50%
35 out of 43

The Monarch created by MyMindsEye

grasshopper1 avatarLevel 11Heart award
48%
36 out of 43

Tag Your It created by grasshopper1

aipics avatarLevel 7
48%
37 out of 43

Damselfly created by aipics

aipics avatarLevel 7
48%
38 out of 43

Hold up tight created by aipics

aipics avatarLevel 7
48%
39 out of 43

Spider created by aipics

Wayne-Cheah avatarLevel 11
45%
40 out of 43

Colors of the Night created by Wayne-Cheah

grasshopper1 avatarLevel 11
42%
41 out of 43

Backyard Lizard created by grasshopper1

Taking under a tree on a bright sunny day.

aipics avatarLevel 7
42%
42 out of 43

Dragonfly created by aipics

1 reaction
Olga.L avatarLevel 16
Olga.L

You must have been very excited to capture this photo, but it is out of focus.

grasshopper1 avatarLevel 11
40%
43 out of 43

Sleeping Beauty created by grasshopper1

I woke her up from her chicken nap.

Staaan avatarLevel 19
Staaan

If you have any questions/suggestions/comments about this contest, reply to this comment!

Good luck! ๐Ÿ‘‡

11 reactions
Vibeke avatarLevel 10Heart award
Vibeke

It was lovely to see so many new members entering last week, I hope they will enter again.

aipics avatarLevel 7
aipics replied to Vibeke :

Is it allow to used other app to make bokeh or only by using lens is allow?

kyricom avatarLevel 13
kyricom replied to aipics :

It's a photography contest, not an App contest, so I hope they're done through the lens.

aipics avatarLevel 7
aipics replied to kyricom :

Thank you for your response.

Wayne-Cheah avatarLevel 11
Wayne-Cheah replied to kyricom :

The contest Rules say "... If you do create the bokeh effect with post-processing, be sure to mention this in your description" So, post-processing Bokeh is allowed?

I hope the Admin. reconsider this Rule as @kyricom says, "...It's a photography contest, not an App contest"

Staaan avatarLevel 19
Staaan replied to Wayne-Cheah :

Let's see how it goes.

If it's post-processed it should be mentioned

We can give everyone a chance this way this way

Wayne-Cheah avatarLevel 11
Wayne-Cheah replied to Staaan :

The problem will be one of judging apples with oranges. A post-processed Bokeh will always be of a higher quality than one resulting from a Bokeh technique.

If it is mentioned that it is a post-processed Bokeh, do we then put a lower voting weightage to it as compared to a "natural" Bokeh? If not what then is the point of mentioning that it is Post-processed since both natural and post-processed ones are judged together?

I am not insisting of course and please don't take my comments the wrong way, but I see judging problems giving rise to an unfair imbalance of votes.

I hope I don't come across as being aggressive as sometimes words alone may appear so.

Staaan avatarLevel 19
Staaan replied to Wayne-Cheah :

Nono, I'm thankful for your feedback :)

Ok, let's change the rules and avoid confusion: creating the bokeh effect via post-processing is not allowed.

Wayne-Cheah avatarLevel 11
Wayne-Cheah replied to Staaan :

Thank you.

Zizounai avatarLevel 15
Zizounai replied to Wayne-Cheah :

Thanks for this comment Wayne, I thought the same but couldn't say it better than you did ๐Ÿ˜Š

Wayne-Cheah avatarLevel 11
Wayne-Cheah replied to Zizounai :

Thanks, much appreciated.

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