Your Camera Gear Should Contain Neutral Density Filters, to Get Better Landscape Photography!
Now's photo suggestion concerns the neutral density filter. To get better landscape photography, this is just another piece of camera gear which should be at all times in your bag! It's another filter effect that can't be duplicated after the fact. It has to 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 can shoot it so that it looks like a gigantic string of cotton candy! And everything in between!
By the way, do you realize that Niagara Falls truly stopped flowing in 1848 for about 20 hours because there was ice which was obstructing the Niagara River? Picture a before and after shot of THAT!
Anyway, back to our tip...
We all know that to get the image that is sharp, we to get the cotton candy blur we desire a slow one and need a fast shutter speed.
Another good reason to set your camera on manual! You won't ever get award winning shots on automatic! They are going to look like everyone else's.
What if we need an extremely slow shutter speed, but it's a brilliant day? As you know, just a specific amount of light can be let in for a good exposure - it will ruin the photo if you let in too much.
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So we first start closing down the aperture. What if that's not enough? suppose that we're at the smallest 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 is certainly fine, it's going to give us nicely saturated, noise free shots... but there are constraints.
The simple fix would be to block some of that light since our difficulty is that too much light is entering the lens.
Enter the 'Neutral Density Filter'.
The neutral density filter is a filter that is designed to obstruct a certain amount of light. That is all! It does not change the light in any way - it's inert. The light entering the lens has all the same properties; there is simply less of it.
Voilla! You're now able to shoot at that silky, waterfall that is cotton candy - on a brilliant sunny day!
Neutral density filters come in various 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 five stop along with a three stop neutral density filter together for eight full stops! (That is a LOT of light!)
Neutral density filters have tons of uses, not only for waterfalls. In tomorrows photo hint article, I'll go into even more cool things that you certainly can do to improve your landscape photography with these essential camera gear accessories.