Thursday, January 24, 2013

Long Exposure Skywatching!

My newest photo equipment purchase is a neutral density filter (I've also seen it called "black glass", which is a perfect description). A very simple concept... you put dark glass in front of your lens, and it reduces the light getting in to your camera, so you require longer exposures. I got some good advice on which one to buy from Wayne Woodruff Photography (thanks!) and took it out for a spin today to try to capture some of the nice skies we are enjoying.
Hard to believe this is a 30 second exposure!  F/14, ISO 100, 16mm

30 second exposure, f/14, ISO 100, 16mm focal length
With a 30 second exposure, goes without saying you need a tripod. It also makes it easy to walk in front of the camera and get in the shot. Another cool effect... things that are moving tend to disappear! Here's an example... a busy street scene without the ND filter on the camera.
1/40 sec exposure, f/16, ISO 100, 16mm (ND filter removed)
Identical shot (used a tripod, so camera is unmoved) but with the ND filter in front of the lens... look how the cars magically disappear!
With ND Filter:  30 sec exposure, f/16, ISO 100, 16mm 
If you look closely, the sky looks a little different... over 30 seconds, there's some cloud movement so they look "softer" and less defined. I think I'm going to have fun with the filter... there's a lot you can do with it!
Linking to Skywatch Friday. Click on the link to 
see great skies from around the world!
Enjoy your weekend.

27 comments:

  1. Well that's cool how you made that traffic disappear! I'll bet a lot of people would like to take you along on their morning drive to work!

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  2. Wow that sure does look like a fun filter. The cars are gone but the clouds are moving. Questions?????
    Nice shots too. MB

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  3. Awesome results, always something new to learn about photography

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  4. those are great shots...and I love your photography lesson...thanks for the tips!

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  5. Wow, cool shots! Love the pretty views. And the magically disappearing cars, neat trick. Well done! Happy skywatching!

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  6. Superb captures and gorgeous skies!! Thanks for the photography lesson -- I need all the help I can get!! Hope you have a lovely weekend! Enjoy!!

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  7. Thanks for the lesson. The results are wonderful. Makes me want to run out and get an ND filter.

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  8. Wow, I think I see a new purchase for my arsenal! That is so cool. Thank you for sharing the info and tips. Love the photos.

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  9. Wow! I could think of a bunch of photos I would try with one of those babies!!

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  10. i'm not surprised wayne gave you tips. you two like to experiment a lot with your photos. very cool. :)

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  11. I have a neutral density filter and really like it. I use it quite a bit when photographing mountain streams. These pictures are wonderful.

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  12. Wow, what an effect. It reminds me of stories of the early days of photography where the exposures took so long that they had clamps to hold people's head's in place but the photographer didn't worry about people walking in front of the camera during exposure because they would "disappear" in the photograph.

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  13. Wow, I want to hear more about the density filter. That's amazing to see people appear up front and cars disappear, wonderful! My eyes couldn't help but drift down below your post to the prize... the self portrait of the little one. She is adorable. Have a wonderful weekend!

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  14. If criticism is accepted...I am not sure I like the star-like quality of the lights. I liked your moon shot, the one you thought too big. To capture the landscape on the moon is a wonderful achievement!

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  15. Clearly you are having lots of fun with all these tricks of the trade, and I love that you're sharing them in such detail with some great examples! Interesting how the clouds change and fast-moving objects disappear. And unlike Margaret above, I love the "starburst" look of the sun in these! Variety is the spice of life. :-)

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  16. Well, that's a great thing, and you put it to great use. These are wonderful pics.

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  17. Great that you explained the use of a grey filter in some cases. You can remove or blur movements. Expanding on the tempo it moves. Never thought about that.

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  18. Great captures, filters are of great use. I love the header shot too!~

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  19. Very cool effects! Thanks for the example photos and explanation. It's fun to experiment and see what turns out.

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  20. Nice pictures - I "big stopper" is on my wish list! I want one for softening the waves in sea shots.

    Stewart M - Melbourne

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  21. That is REALLY cool! I love the way the sun looks like a starburst, and I don't mean the candy. Just amazing what a dark glass can do.

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  22. Lovely tutorial, i have a graduated ND filter but not really using it often. I have an ND filter but it is grey, and wonder how to use it. You might be thinking why I am not learning about them...that is because i don't have a good tripod, and always want to take them handheld, haha!

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    Replies
    1. Great capture for sure! Love sky photos like these. Especially with that sun!

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  23. Those are just gorgeous pictures. The tech stuff is pretty much lost on me, but I know enough to appreciate fine work when I see it! Thank you.

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