Neutral Density Filters Should Be Included by Your Camera Gear to Get Better Landscape Photography!
Today's photo tip concerns the neutral density filter. To get better landscape photography, this is just another piece of camera equipment which should be at all times in your bag! It is another filter effect that can not be duplicated after the fact. It must be in the camera.
I'm certain you have seen landscape photography of a waterfall.
It's possible for you to shoot it so that every drop of water is in sharp relief... or you'll be able to shoot it so that it resembles a huge string of cotton candy! And everything in between!
By the way, did you know that Niagara Falls truly ceased flowing for about 20 hours in 1848 because there was ice which was obstructing the Niagara River? Picture a before and after shot of THAT!
Anyway, back to our point...
We are aware that to get the image that is sharp, we want a quick shutter speed and to get the cotton candy blur we want a slow one.
Another great reason to place 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 want an extremely slow shutter speed, but it's a brilliant day? As you know, merely a particular amount of light can be let in for an excellent exposure - should you let in too much, it is going to ruin the photo.
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So we begin closing down the aperture. What if that isn't enough? Imagine if we are at the lowest aperture setting - and we still have too much light.
Our next choice would be to go with the slowest film or ISO setting we can. That's fine, it will give us nicely saturated, sound 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 designed to block a certain amount of light. That's all! It doesn't alter the light in any manner - it's neutral. The light going into the lens has all the same properties; there is only less of it.
Voilla! You're now able to shoot at waterfall that is cotton candies, that sleek - on a brilliant sunny day!
Neutral density filters come in various strengths. It's possible for you to block one stop of light, three, five, and so on. Plus various densities can be 'stacked' for even more light blockage. You can place a five stop along with a three stop neutral density filter 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 hint post, I'll go into even more cool things you can do to improve your landscape photography with these essential camera gear accessories.