Life moves fast. Sometimes it even feels like a blur. And for this week's Shooting Challenge, we're celebrating the speed of life.

The Challenge

Take a photo where a subject is sitting still and their background is blurred by speed/motion.

The Method

So technically, there are a few ways to pull off a blurred background, and even a background with motion blur. For this week, though, I want you to have your camera with your subject—on a tire swing, or a train—and for the background to blur from a difference in relative speed. Because if you photograph someone while sitting with them on a tire swing, you're essentially both sitting still—until the background reveals that can't possibly be true.


Oh, and technically speaking, make sure that you haven't set your shutter speed too fast, or it may be hard to create the effect.

The Example

Our lead shot is from Sweet Carolina Photography on flickr. It's an excellent proof of the concept I've described above. Now how many other scenarios you can discover to blur the world behind your subject? That's where this week gets to be a lot of fun.

The Rules - READ THESE

0. No watermarks. They're so ugly.
1. Submissions need to be your own.
2. Photos must be taken since this contest was announced.
3. Explain, briefly, the equipment, settings, technique and story behind shot.
4. Email submissions to, not me.
5. Include 970px wide image (200KB or less) AND a native resolution sized shot in email.
6. One submission per person.
7. Use the proper SUBJECT line in your email (more info on that below)
8. You agree to the Standard Contest Rules - though we DO accept non-US resident submissions.
9. If the image contains any material or elements that are not owned by you and/or which are subject to the rights of third parties, and/or if any persons appear in the image, you are responsible for obtaining, prior to submission of the photograph, any and all releases and consents necessary to permit the exhibition and use of the image in the manner set forth in these rules without additional compensation. If any person appearing in any image is under the age of majority in their state/province/territory of residence the signature of a parent or legal guardian is required on each release.

Send your best photo by Monday, October 7th at 10AM Eastern to with "Blur" in the subject line. Save your files as JPGs, and use a FirstnameLastnameBlur.jpg (970px wide) and FirstnameLastnameBlurWallpaper.jpg (2560px wide) naming conventions. Include your shooting summary (camera, lens, ISO, etc) in the body of the email along with a story of the shot in a few sentences. And don't skip this story part because it's often the most enjoyable part for us all beyond the shot itself!