Add another layer of realism with Depth of Field

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Over the years, we’ve added many features to render your art beautifully on the Web: physically based rendering, supersampling, real time shadows and more. Today, we are happy to announce a new feature that will make your models look even better: a depth of field filter!

For those who are not familiar with depth of field, the effect simulates how a professional camera blurs the background and foreground of an image. For decades, photographers and filmmakers have used this property to draw the attention on their subject for better storytelling. A shallow depth of field is often considered a major technique for making photorealistic images.

Tip: click anywhere in the viewer below to change the focus to that point.

How does it work?

Our depth of field is implemented as a post processing filter where you can adjust the intensity of the foreground and background blur. These two settings give you a lot of control on what’s in focus or not while being easier to use than camera-like settings.

The depth of field filter also comes with a unique autofocus system to make the effect work in our interactive viewer. By default, the camera focuses on the center of the screen and will do its best to stay focused on the model. Of course, you can choose to focus the camera anywhere else by clicking on the model. Finally, when you zoom all the way out, the effect is reduced.

Note that this filter is not compatible with a static background images or a transparent backgrounds. We’re also following VR best practices by turning it off in VR.

For full details, please read our new Help Center section on Depth of Field.

User videos

We invited the Sketchfab Masters to help test this new feature. In the following two videos, two of them share their experience.

Video 1: Thomas Flynn

Thomas Flynn does a lot of 3D scanning work for high-end museums like the British Museum and the Horniman Museum in London. He also recently co-founded Museum in a Box.

Video 2: Christoph Schoch

Christoph Schoch is a 3D character artist from Toronto, Canada. He works for Guru Studio and also owns his own studio, Triple Dot Games.

About the author

Maurice Svay

UX Designer at Sketchfab. Photography and 3D scanning enthusiast.

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