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How to Use the Field Blur Filter in Photoshop CS6

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This excerpt from Photoshop CS6: Visual QuickStart Guide shows you how to use the Field Blur filter, which is handy when you need the most flexibility and control in blurring specific areas of an image while keeping other (more important) areas in sharp focus.

Use as many pins as you like, but be sure place a few pins with a Blur value of 0% in areas that you want to keep in focus and place other pins with a Blur value between 5% and 100% in areas that you want to blur (the blurring occurs between the high and low values).A–C You can reposition any pin individually by dragging it in the image.

Figure A This is the original image.

Figure B We applied the Field Blur filter using a Blur value of 0% for the pins on the woman’s face and hands to keep those areas in focus, and Blur values above 10% for the other pins.

Figure C This is the result.

The Tilt-Shift Filter

The Tilt-Shift filter applies blurring in two straight bands across the image, while keeping a band in the center in focus. You can control the width of the blurred area by dragging either or both of the focus lines, adjust the amount of feathering by dragging either or both of the feather lines, or shift the whole widget to a new angle by dragging a rotation handle slightly.A–C You can also choose a negative Distortion value to distort a blurred area along imaginary lines that curve around the pin, or a positive value to distort a blurred area along lines that radiate outward from the pin. Additionally, you can check Symmetric Distortion to apply the distortion to both blur areas.

Figure A This is the original image.

Figure B We chose the Tilt-Shift filter settings shown at right, then rotated and dragged the feather and focus lines.

Figure C This is the result of our applying the Tilt-Shift filter.

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