Your Camera Equipment Should Include Neutral Density Filters to Get Better Landscape Photography!
The neutral density filter is concerned by today's photo suggestion. This is just another piece of camera equipment which should be in your bag at all times, to get better landscape photography! It's another filter effect that can't be duplicated after the fact. It must be in the camera.
I'm sure you've seen landscape photography of a waterfall.
It's possible for you to shoot it so that each drop of water is in sharp relief... or you can shoot it so that it looks like a massive string of cotton candy! And everything in between!
Incidentally, did you know that Niagara Falls really stopped flowing in 1848 for about 20 hours because there was ice that was obstructing the Niagara River? Picture a before and after shot of THAT!
Anyway, back to our tip...
We know that to get the image that is sharp, we to get the cotton candy blur we want a slow one and want a quick shutter speed.
Another great reason to set your camera on guide! You won't ever get award winning shots on automatic! They will look like everyone else's.
Imagine if we want an extremely slow shutter speed, but it is a bright day? Only a specific amount of light can be let in for a great exposure as you know - if you let in too much, it's going to ruin the picture.
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So we first start closing down the aperture. What if that's not enough? What if we're at the lowest aperture setting - and we still have too much light.
Our next alternative would be to go with the slowest film or ISO setting we can. That's nice, it will give us nicely saturated, sound free shots... but there are limitations.
Since our problem is that too much light is entering the lens, the simple fix is to obstruct some of that light.
Enter the 'Neutral Density Filter'.
The neutral density filter is a filter that is designed to block a certain amount of light. That's all! It doesn't alter the light in any manner - it is inert. The light entering the lens has all the same properties; there is only less of it.
Voilla! You are now able to shoot at that glossy, cotton candies waterfall - on a bright sunny day!
Neutral density filters come in a variety of strengths. You can block one stop of light, three, five, and so on. Plus various densities can be 'stacked' for even more light blockage. You can put a three stop neutral density filter and also a five stop together for eight full stops! (That's a LOT of light!)
Neutral density filters have lots of uses, not just for waterfalls. In tomorrows photo suggestion article, I'll go into even more cool things you can do to enhance your landscape photography with these crucial camera gear accessories.