DIY Heart Shaped Bokeh

How about that snowstorm, huh? I hope you all managed the weather just fine, and that you're not too sore from shoveling! Wasn't it nice to be able to just stay home and "hunker down"? I took advantage of the time by staying at my parent's house with my little brothers, where we drank hot chocolate, looked at old photo albums, played board games, and had snowball fights. When the driving ban was lifted, I made my way over to my other brother's new apartment for brews and card games with friends. I loved spending the weekend just having some good old fashioned fun!

As promised, I'm continuing the Valentine's theme this week, and today I have a fun photography DIY for you. Have you ever seen photographs with colorful little hearts scattered about them, and wondered how it was done (without using an app)? I'm going to tell you how!

1. Using black paper, trace around the outside of your camera lens to make a circle.

2. Draw a heart in the center of the circle. In order for your bokeh to work, this heart has to be sized correctly. To figure out the maximum size your bokeh can be, take the size of your lens (mine was 35mm but I've heard 50mm works really well) and divide that number by the number of your widest aperture setting (lowest f-stop number). Mine was f:1.8 so the biggest size my heart shape could be was 18.4mm. 

3. Carefully cut out your circle and heart shape.

4. Cut a strip of black paper and measure it to be the length around your lens, then tape the ends together to form a short cylinder. 

5. Tape your circle with the cutout to this cylinder, making sure to cover any spaces to ensure no light can get in. Black electrical tape is probably your best bet. Cover your lens with your new bokeh.

When taking your photos, set the dial on your camera to the "A" aperture setting and set the aperture to the lowest number. Using manual focus, unfocus your lens until any lights in view turn to heart shapes on your display screen. You may have to adjust your ISO settings until you get it just right. 

If you want to achieve the pink effect I've created to make the photos a little more "Valentiney", it's really simple. Just open the photo in photoshop, go to your image adjustments, select photo filter, and choose "magenta" from the drop down list. Set the density to 100% and check the box that says "Preserve Luminosity". That's all there is too it. Good luck!


  1. This is freaking awesome! The end :)

    XO Jenna

  2. It's so sweet how you turned the hearts into red shades for V day!

    1. Thanks Lisa! I thought they needed a little something extra :)

  3. Will definitely be trying this out for myself! Such a fun DIY.

    1. Awesome!! I hope you get some great shots!