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FOCUS BRACKETING: "a technique used by professionals"

(Topic created on: 20-01-2023 06:17 PM)
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Have you ever noticed that in advertising photography, the product is clean from start to finish?

On some cameras like my Canon *** (see description below)  , the Bracketing function has been around for a long time and I sincerely hope that Samsung will put this function on its Galaxy S 23* which are supposed to revolutionize photography according to what they say. ...

Did you know that it is impossible to take this kind of photos unless you use a professional trick that I will teach you....But first, try to take a photo like this at home :

Cassidy007_0-1674238331173.jpegIf you noticed, ALL of the objects in the tray are in focus and the photo was taken up close!  

Easy, you might say...try taking a photo with your smartphone to see if it's easy! 

Focus Bracketing is the solution and here's what it is... (you should know first that no camera or lens will give you this result...

To succeed in this feat, you need 4 things. (5 if I count patience )

  1.  You will need to take several photos with a focus that goes from the front to the back. In this photo, I had to take 4 photos but I should have taken one more and put the focus on the tip of the teapot where there is a white washer.
  2. You will need stitching software to reconstruct an image having taken into account the different focuses you have made on your image. I chose Helicon Focus which is one of the best known available in trial version (it was free a very short time ago.)
  3. You will also need a DNG converter if you want to work with .DNG/RAW photos. Adobe DNG Converter is offered FREE.
  4. The most important thing is to have a tripod otherwise it will be impossible for you to always have the same photo frame and the software will take care of the rest...

In my time, it was very difficult to do Focus Bracketing* and/or Exposure Bracketing** because each photo had to be aligned manually and only the big studios could afford this luxury whereas now, software is takes care of aligning your photos quickly... Isn't it wonderful to be so technologically advanced? 

And soon, everything will be done in the camera and you can stitch 2 to 100 photos.

Here are examples of photos that I had Helicon Focus put together that I test for 30 days before deciding whether to buy it or not... There are FREE software on the Internet  but I haven't taken the time to look knowing that I have a similar program that comes with my Canon camera but does not work with .DNGs or JPGs from my smartphone camera. 

Since my test is conclusive, I will probably buy Helicon Focus because the photos you will get from it will be great whether for landscapes, Macro photos or simple portraits. 

I hardly dare to think what the photo would like if we had used Focus Bracketing on our photos taken with the 108MP sensor...It would have been phenomenal!

Alright, here's how to do it once you've taken your multiple photos.


1. Choose all photos taken with different focus. (we can't mix .DNG and .JPG, it's one or the other depending if you took your photos in Pro Mode or Photo Mode..)

Once we have chosen them, we drop them in the Helicon Focus application THEN


2- Then you click   Proceed to Render



3- After a few seconds, your final image will be ready and you will see it to the right of the first processing image... You just have to copy it by going to Save and paste it into another program to not have the BIG watermark of Helicon Focus trial version.

Here is the end result:


As you can see, I took nearly a dozen different focuses starting from the first candle to get to the last part of the dresser and  ALL the objects are CLEAR which theoretically is impossible whatever the camera or the lens. 


Try to make a photo as clear as this from the front to the back!



Unfortunately, I had to add a sky because the photo didn't stand out enough... Next time I'll try to go into the forest and I'll test the S22's 50MP sensor, taking a good tripod because this time I didn't have than a monopod that offers no stability.

* Focus Bracketing is slightly different from Exposure Bracketing.

* Focus Bracketing consists of assembling different photos that have been taken with different focuses.

** Exposure Bracketing involves taking multiple photos with different exposures and recombining results in a photo with the best possible exposure. Exposure Bracketing is different from HDR because it doesn't try to bring out objects that are in shadow or overexposed.

HDR (High Dynamic Range) photography is traditionally a post-processing technique, while bracketing (exposure) is a technique that photographers use "in-camera" that makes HDR possible.

Exposure bracketing allows multiple shots to be obtained with different sequential exposures. HDR combines all the shots into a single image, using editing software.

Source:  Ultimate Guide to Bracketing in Photography (2023) (

*** On my Canon, I can tell it how many exposures I want it to take and with what increment and it will take all the photos one after the other until it has reached the number of photos requested. (I can ask to make 999 photos if I want it) On the   other hand, it will not make the rendering of this Bracketing which requires an  application for the compilation and the final rendering.

That's it...Now go practice whether it's in your house or outside  and show us your results!

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