What is Focus Your camera works by focusing light onto a sensor or film. Focus is important because it makes the subject of the picture clear and sharp.
Light bends as it passes through the lens of the camera and if the lens is the correct distance from the sensor, then the light will be focused properly.
When an image is in focus it is easy to see the details in the picture. In the picture to the left you can see that the bird is in focus. You can see clear details in the feathers and in the wooden fence the bird is sitting on.
In the picture to the right, one can still see the bird but all the details in the feathers and in the wood are gone.
How to Focus
All modern cameras are able to focus automatically. Some cameras let you turn this auto focus off, but this is only available in cameras where you can remove the lens.
To focus a picture in automatic mode, point the camera at your subject and press the shutter button lightly. You need to press it part of the way down until you can see the image come into focus (but not all the way down since that will actually take the picture). There may be a faint click from the camera to let you know that auto focus has been used. Look at the image again. If it is in focus, then press the shutter button once more, this time all the way down, to take the picture. If it is not in focus, then try again from the beginning.
If your camera has the option to use manual focus, then there will be a ring on the lens that you turn to get the picture into focus.
by Simon James Allanach, edited by Alan Frost
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