How to Create the Zoom Blur Effect

October 25, 2012 | Mark Goldstein | Photography Techniques | 12 Comments | |
How to Create the Zoom Blur Effect Image

Have you ever been out and about with your camera and have lost all inspiration, you just cant seem to get your creative juices flowing and every shot you take seems dull and boring, well whenever it happens to me I always do this one great effect and before I know it hours have flown by and I have lots of amazing photos.

What’s this effect I hear you ask well I call it the blurred zoom effect its zooming while you are pressing the shutter realise button at the same time.

Here is an article explaining how to do it, like every thing in life, it becomes easy after a little bit of practice.

1. Control the amount of zoom

In simplistic terms you are zooming at the same time as pressing the shutter release button, but there are different techniques that you can use to do this.

Sometime you will need to control the amount that you zoom as the effect can be too much, so you can zoom half the range of your zoom lens allows.

Make sure you experiment with the zooming, from out to in and the other way around or even try stopping for a split second through the shot to see what results you get. You can also try zooming out fast and then slowly and see what effect this has, just experiment and have some fun with it.

2. Watch out for the light levels

In photography they say light is your friend but using this technique with too much light can make it tough getting these results, All these shot were taken on an overcast day, also early evening is another great time to take these kinds of photos. The problem is when there is too much light you can easily over expose the photos which makes them come out too light. One way of reducing this is by having the aperture up high like F32 in some extreme cases as this make the hole in your camera lens very small which reduces the amount of light which enters the camera.

How to Create the Zoom Blur Effect

Another tip is to put your ISO down to 100 as this makes the sensor in your camera less reactive to the light, which increases your chances of getting this style of shots as this will help reduce over exposure.

3. Keeping the camera still

Ok easier said then done but you need to keep the camera nice and still when you are using this technique, make sure you are holding the camera securely as you zoom in or out. I even go to the extent of breathing out softly, this helps keep you and your camera stay nice and still.

One of the very few times you could use a tripod during the day light is when you are trying to get these results, put the camera on a tripod and all you need to worry about is your zoom speed as the camera is now perfectly still this produces a different style of photo compared to hand held zoom effect photography.

Entry Tags

zoom, technique, blur, effect, blurring, zooming, zoom blur, How to Create the Zoom Blur Effect

Tracker Pixel for Entry

Your Comments

12 Comments | Newest Oldest First | Post a Comment

#1 YouDidntDidYou

zoom blur tips:
1.shutter priority, low ISO
2. lens with good amount of zoom eg 14mm-140mm on mft
3. manual focus
4. get camera stabilised
5. choose portrait or landscape
6. figure where you want to stop zooming do this at the same time you are manual focusing
7. press shutter and review, can you usually get a good shot after 2-3 attempts

*** works well if there are additional light sources

5:30 pm - Friday, October 26, 2012

#2 ottawa wedding photographer

Great effect—and I’d add as an additional suggestion, employing a crop to obscure the fact that the subject (the part that will be less blurred) was composed centrally—ie. centre on the subject, do the blur; then compose so that the subject is in, say, the top right rule-of-thirds point.

5:52 pm - Sunday, October 28, 2012

#3 ottawa wedding photographer

(oops, I think I blew up my comment)
One additional tip might be to centre your subject, use this effect, then recompose to put that central subject off centre as a way to obscure a little how you achieved the effect.

5:55 pm - Sunday, October 28, 2012

#4 Tux Kenobi

During strong day light use a neutral density filter (ND) so your photo doesn’t come out all white.
If you don’t have one and are using a tripod, or have someone to help you, sunglasses can do it.

2:17 am - Monday, October 29, 2012

#5 Peggy Paris

You have great talent, its just fantastic

8:40 am - Tuesday, January 22, 2013

#6 Martha

Thank you for great post:) I think photography means knowledge and creativity. You can take excellent photo if you have knowledge about the technique and if you are creative. Zoom Blur Effect is one of the greatest effect if you use it right.If you want to take breathtaking photographs and amaze people with your skills, you need to learn and practice a lot. I learned almost everything to skip the amateur photographer stage with this website. You should take a look at the great information.;/photography-tricks-and-techniques-learn-advanced-photography.html

12:12 pm - Tuesday, May 7, 2013

#7 MakingPhoto

The only problem with this effect is that to get the best yields, try to place your subject in the center of the photo.

7:58 am - Saturday, May 24, 2014

#8 Roger M. Lloyd

Thanks for the nice post. I learn new things by your post. I can’t Zoom Blur before but by your post I can now. Thanks a lot…

11:45 am - Tuesday, May 27, 2014

#9 Clipping Path

Very very informative post .I like it most and thanks to you for sharing this kind of post.

3:34 pm - Wednesday, November 4, 2015

#10 Suresh Kumar

I recommend you experiment with the zoom, farthest to nearest and backwards, can even stop a split second at any time while you change the size of the plane and see what results you get. You can also start turning the zoom ring very quickly and then slowly go get slowing it down to see what affect; simply, experience and stay with the results that you like.

7:30 am - Friday, April 1, 2016

#11 candid wedding photographer-Raman

What a lovely wedding! Always nice to hear how people met!

12:43 pm - Thursday, August 4, 2016

#12 Pixel style

Thanks for your post. The blur effect is shocking, but dazzling. As a beginner, I’d like to use some filters in PixelStyle. But your post is still very usefully to me.

5:49 am - Friday, September 30, 2016