Have a question about using ND filters to take long exposures for beach and sunset, waterfalls etc
I will be travelling soon and wish to take this on my trip to try and get some good shots
I have never used a ND filter before, and have never really tried long exposure shots (well I tried but all I got was white screens lol)
I don’t really have the best lenses or anything just a D7K and the 18-105 lens which is what I will be taking for the trip.
I need some advice on what filters I will have to buy to achieve what I’m trying to do and how long of an exposure I will need
I have seen the ND variable filter on ebay that’s can have different types in one, and also the square looking one with the bracket where you insert the appropriate filter which one would be the pick, or is there something else I should be looking into?
Bear in mind im trying to spend as little as possible on the filters and associated stuff due to concentrating on my overseas trip so money talks in this situation.
Many thanks in advance
#1. "RE: Long exposure and ND filter help" | In response to Reply # 0esantos Nikonian since 10th Nov 2002Thu 15-Nov-12 04:09 PM
Since you are new to using ND filters I would start simple with a good quality screw-on type circular design. I particularly like those made by B+W. They are good quality and are free of color casting which can be an issue with cheaper brands. In order to get good misty effects of flowing water you'll need exposures of at least 10 seconds or more. I've made some exceeding 30 seconds. It really depends on the situation and how fast or turbulent the water flow is.
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#2. "RE: Long exposure and ND filter help" | In response to Reply # 0ericbowles Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Tue 20-Nov-12 12:10 PM
There are lots of options here.
Generally we try to photograph waterfalls and streams with overcast conditions or with very soft light. I find you can get soft flowing water with an exposure of around two seconds. The really soft effect is 15 seconds to several minutes. The first type of image - a 2 second exposure can be achieved by using a circular polarizer, a narrow aperture (f/16 or higher), and the lowest ISO (Lo -1.0). The latter situation requires really dim conditions such as moonlight or a ND filter.
Now if you expect to achieve these effects with just a filter in bright sun, it won't happen, but ND filters may still be useful for other creative effects. A busy highway with fast moving cars looks deserted with a longer exposure. The same is true for crowds of people.
You can simulate a long exposure by taking multiple exposures in your camera. The D7000 has a multiple exposure menu setting. Take 5 exposures of 1/10 of a second with the multiple exposure function, and your image will look a lot like a two or three second exposure. You can get very creative with multiple exposures, a CP, and a tripod.
I'm not sure whether you are referring to a ND filter or a Graduated ND filter for sunrise and sunset. A neutral density filter is just another filter and it screws onto the front of your lens. A graduated ND filter is different - it only covers a portion of the lens so you can darken the area above the horizon but retain adequate lighting in the foreground. Graduated ND filters - or Grad Filters - are typically rectangular and fit into a holder that is attached with an adapter ring that matches your filter threads.
There are three types of grad filters referring to the edge of the filtering. Hard Stop filters cover half the filter pretty evenly. Soft Stop filters gradually increase the filtering from the middle to the top. Reverse filters start with maximum filtering in the middle and decrease filtering toward the top.
I use hard stops for relatively level horizon, or to block half of an image that full sun with the other half in full shadow. I use Soft stop filters for an unlevel horizon or where I want a gradual effect. And I use a reverse filter shooting toward the sun at sunrise or sunset. All of these have different techniques, and each has a place in your bag. And they can be used in combination.
We normally start with a Cokin P holder, appropriate adapter ring, and one or two filters. Take a look at the HiTec filters or similar economy filters. There are advantages to more expensive filters in terms of durability and lack of color distortion. You can even buy larger filters that fit larger lenses easier.
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