However, the greatest potential for light field photography will be realized by software tools that enable creative manipulation of the light field data. Once in the hands of artists, this will be a revolutionary technology. One obvious photographic application is creative use of blur, focus, and DoF in ways that were not possible before. View camera and tilt-(shift) lenses made it possible to focus on a plane not parallel to the focal plane to create images with either apparent extended DoF – or much narrower DoF than normal, leading to the “miniature world” effect. Light field images would let you exert total control over focus and blur wherever you want, with a “focus brush”. You wouldn’t be limited to a plane anymore. You could have several people at different distances, all sharp, and a blurred background. You could have a all parts of a close 3D object (such as a flower) all in focus, and a blurred background. It could start as a simple interface that let you click two points – like in the Canon DoF mode – and have everything in-between sharp. Eventually, your imagination would be the only limit.
» What is the Light field camera from Lytro good for ? – from QT Luong’s Blog (via Julian Bleecker)