Origin of bokehJapanese boke blur, blurring (as a technique of traditional Japanese ink wash painting) verbal noun of bokeru to be senile or muddle-headed, be hazy or blurry, fade from alteration (with pejorative voiced b for voiceless h ) of Old Japanese hoku, hoke- to be lost in thought, absent-minded, vague
- subjective aesthetic quality of out-of-focus areas of an image projected by a camera lens
From Japanese 暈け (boke, “blur”), the nominalized form of the verb 暈ける (bokeru, “to blur (intransitive)”).
The terminal -h (by comparison with the romanization boke) is a pronunciation guide, so that it is not pronounced as IPA: /boʊk/ as it would under standard English orthography. Contrast karate, karaoke, which have undergone sound change.
Used since at least 1996, with spelling bokeh popularized by editor Mike Johnston in the March/April 1997 issue of Photo Techniques magazine, which featured three commissioned articles on the topic, Johnston writing:
- “it is properly pronounced with bo as in bone and ke as in Kenneth, with equal stress on either syllable”.
bokeh - Computer Definition
Pronounced "bo-keh," it is Japanese for blur and refers to the out-of-focus background in a photo or video. Depending on camera type and distance to the object in focus, the bokeh effect is often unintentional; however, the effect is widely used by photographers and movie makers when they want to set a certain mood for the scene.