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Grammar of the Shot, 2nd Edition by Christopher J. Bowen, Roy Thompson

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Control Your Depth of Field

You should always be aware of your depth of field—the range of objects seen to be in acceptable focus and extend into the depth of your shot. The DOF can be controlled (greater or smaller) and shifted within the film space (closer or further from camera). Remember that the nature of optics will provide you with only one critical plane of focus in front of the camera’s lens. Whatever lives exactly at that distance from the camera will be in sharpest focus. The DOF operates around this one critical focus plane and its horizontal depth is segmented into two unequal parts. The first segment (roughly one-third the overall area of good focus) falls before the critical plane, and the second segment (roughly the remaining ...

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