Common photo problems and how to fix them in Photoshop: #9 The background is too sharp

Photoshop background blur
(Image credit: James Paterson)

Everybody loves background blur, but sometimes it's easier said than done. If you need to use a wide-angle lens or a small lens aperture in bright light, or if you're using a camera with a smaller sensor, you often end up with more depth of field than you wanted. The answer? If you can't blur the background in-camera, do it with Photoshop!

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James Paterson

The lead technique writer on Digital Camera MagazinePhotoPlus: The Canon Magazine and N-Photo: The Nikon Magazine, James is a fantastic general practice photographer with an enviable array of skills across every genre of photography. 

Whether it's flash photography techniques like stroboscopic portraits, astrophotography projects like photographing the Northern Lights, or turning sound into art by making paint dance on a set of speakers, James' tutorials and projects are as creative as they are enjoyable. 

He's also a wizard at the dark arts of Photoshop, Lightroom and Affinity Photo, and is capable of some genuine black magic in the digital darkroom, making him one of the leading authorities on photo editing software and techniques.