This is a very simple technique that can be adjusted for various looks. You will need a lens with a very, very wide aperture. I use the 50mm 1.4.

If you are using a camera that has a 1.6x multiplication factor, such as the Canon 40D, you will need to stand on something, like a chair to get above your subject. Aim your focus square on their eyeball, recompose to taste and fire away. Remember, your DOF is very, VERY thin, so its easy to lose focus if you are not careful.

One of the benefits I love about this shot is that it allows you to use the ground as your texture, which is then blurred out due to the shallow DOF. On my videos, I refer to this as the “From on High” shot, and it’s also known around parts of Alabama as a “Michael Andrew Shot”-thanks to Michelle, the Editor of Alabama Weddings Magazine. The possible ways to recompose this are unlimited, but I like to keep it from their waist up or closer.

Its a good arrow to have in your quiver. Once you have mastered it, you can count on it every time, but the lens itself makes a huge difference, you really need a 1.4 to pull it off. Results are even better with a full frame camera such as a 5D. My Position when shooting this picture: