Your Camera Equipment Should Contain Neutral Density Filters to Get Better Landscape Photography!
Today's photo hint concerns the neutral density filter. This is another piece of camera gear which should be in your bag at all times to get better landscape photography! It's another filter effect that can not be duplicated after the fact. It must be in the camera.
I am sure you have seen landscape photography of a waterfall.
You can shoot it so that each drop of water is in sharp relief... or you'll be able to shoot it so that it resembles a gigantic string of cotton candy! And everything in between!
Incidentally, do you realize that Niagara Falls actually stopped flowing in 1848 for about 20 hours because there was ice that was blocking the Niagara River? Imagine a before and after shot of THAT!
Anyway, back to our tip...
We are aware that to get the sharp image, we to get the cotton candy blur we need a slow one and want a quick shutter speed.
Another great reason to put your camera on manual! You won't ever get award winning shots on automatic! They'll look like everyone else's.
What if we want an extremely slow shutter speed, but it's a brilliant daytime? Just a specific amount of light can be let in for a great exposure as you know - if you let in too much, it is going to destroy the picture.
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So we first start closing down the aperture. What if that's not enough? suppose that we're at the lowest aperture setting - and we still have an excessive amount of light.
Our next option would be to go with the slowest film or ISO setting we can. That's fine, it'll give us nicely saturated, noise free shots... but there are restrictions.
Since our difficulty is that too much light is entering the lens, the simple fix would be to obstruct a few of that light.
Enter the 'Neutral Density Filter'.
The neutral density filter is a filter that is made to block a a predetermined amount of light. That is all! It does not alter the light in any manner - it's inert. The light entering the lens has all the same properties; there's just less of it.
Voilla! You're now able to shoot at waterfall that is cotton sweet, that sleek - on a brilliant 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 set a three stop neutral density filter and also a five stop together for eight full stops! (That is a LOT of light!)
Neutral density filters have lots of uses, not only for waterfalls. In tomorrows photo tip article, I Will go into even more cool things you can certainly do to improve your landscape photography with these indispensable camera gear accessories.