Design & Style

Photography 101: What Is Lens Diffraction In Photography And How Do You Avoid It?

Written by the MasterClass staff

Last updated: Sep 29, 2021 • 4 min read

Small apertures can be a gift to photographers. On bright sunny days, they prevent an image from being washed out, and they save the physical film from being burned by intense sunlight. But there’s a downside to smaller apertures when it comes to achieving an optimally sharp image: as apertures get smaller, images get less sharp and can even end up with undesirable blurring effects. This is known as lens diffraction.