2: "easily replicated with PS"...
well - we're talking analouge photography here, aren't we?
And even if we were not - the true SF (at least in LF) isn't easily replicated. And if it were, then it just look exactely like that: a replica..
(I have never seen a SF picture made in PS that looks right....)
Gandolfi, that's because the PS images weren't done right.
All you have to do is separate the pixels according to distance from the focal plane and radial distance from the lens axis, then apply a mathematical transform to replicate the effect of each pixel at its particular "depth" being defocused as it would be due to the effects of spherical aberration. Of course, Photoshop has no way of knowing how far from the focal plane a given pixel is, so for a high-resolution digital picture you are going to be at this for a while.
Or you could just use a soft focus lens in the first place