© 2012 Alfie Goodrich. All rights reserved.

When Bokeh Is The Only Way

Shot 27th April 2012

The fad for bokeh [the out of focus-ness] has its ups and downs. For some it's pointing the camera at the nearest christmas tree or set of traffic lights and de-focusing the lens. Fine, if that gets your rocks-off but it's not my bag.

I've had a Nikon 50mm f/1.2 lens for 33 years now and I'd like to think that - apart from the odd, often drunken, gratuitous bokeh-hit - I grew out of 'bokeh for the sake of it' a while back.

What I love about this 50 1.2 in particular is its ability to reproduce the dreamlike state I often experience when I am locked-off on a particular little chunk of the world.

I shot this yesterday whilst out touring a couple around for a photo-your/lesson in Tokyo. A simple staircase between the International Forum building in Yurakucho and the subterranean passageways that link it to Tokyo Station. Simple but beautiful. After framing up and waiting, my patience was rewarded with the perfect shoes....

The Gear?

Nikon D700

Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 Ai @ f/1.2

In-camera monochrome settings.


  1. I couldn't agree more. Bokeh is fun when you first get an SLR because it just isn't possible to such a degree with your typical PnS. However, once you get over those first couple collages of blurry color bubbles it is time to start using the equipment the way it was intended … as illustrated here. Great shot !

  2. Jessica Webb

    I love everything about this image!

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