Bokeh photography is really pretty and it's amazingly cheap to create your own lens. You can cut out any shape you like, so there's unlimited possibilities for your photos. There's lots of great tutorials online but I struggled to find a detailed one with all the steps you needed. I also made a PDF you can print out to make your own lens in just a few minutes!
The only material you need to make a lens is a good piece of thick black card. You can download my template above a print it out on to the card to make it super easy - or just follow along with the steps.
Cut a thick strip of black card, which is slightly wider than your lens. Fold it around your lens to find the right length.
Tape the strip so that it's slightly wider than your lens and will slip on and off nicely.
Trace around the cylinder on to the card with a pencil and cut out.
Cut out a large rectangle from the center of the circle.
Cut two thin rectangles to sit at the top and bottom of the opening.
Tape in place at the top and the bottom of either rectangle, ensuring that there's enough space to slip a thin piece of card behind.
Make 1cm snips around one side of the cylinder.
Fold these edges down to create little flaps.
Tape the cylinder to the circle on the inside.
Cut shapes out of small rectangles
Slide in to your lens.
Slide the lens on to your camera and you're ready to get started!
Now let's find something to take a photo of. I found it best to squint my eyes and look for lights that turns in to soft balls of light. Fairy lights work perfectly, as do street lights and traffic lights.
For this I'm going to use the lights above my bookcase. Here's what a normal photo of them that's in focus looks like. I stood a few meters away, with the bokeh lens off of the camera and zoomed in a little.
I then put the shot out of focus so that the lights turn in to fuzzy balls - kind of like when you squint your eyes. The fuzzier they are the better the bokeh will work.
I then slipped on the bokeh lens. The lights should then take the form of the shape you have cut out of the lens through the viewfinder. Move around a little if they don't look quite right.
You can also have objects in focus in the foreground, so you can make it look like you're touching the stars.
Keep practising and you'll get the hang of it. I can't wait to see your photos!