Sunday 19 April 2009

Gear we use and abuse-Circular Poloriser

One of the most useful filters to have in your kit bag is a circular poloriser, It not only makes skies a deeper blue and saturates colours especially foliage but it also removes reflections and glare, You can see here that my filter is huge, Its a Lee filter and goes onto a filter holder but most would be the same size as the end of you lens and would screw directly onto it, I once read a review on various polorisers and they ranged from £30-£200 and at the end of the test they said that they could see very little difference in image quality although the actual build quality could be seen and that they recommended a £50 filter at the end of the test, I bought one of these high street filters and used it for about 6 years and was very pleased with it so its not always the most expensive that will serve your purpose, To get the best out of a poloriser you need to shoot at 90 degrees to the sun, So imagine the sun at one point and a line coming down to you and then imagine a line bouncing up from you at the sky making 90 degrees-that will give you the most effect,Once you have this angle sorted slowly turn the filter and you will see that sky gets lighter or darker,move it until you get the effect you want and shoot,if you turn the camera from landscape to portrait you will have to turn the filter again, In certain circumstances you can get the sky to go nearly black,this is not some thing i like to see as its very unnatural but i do see it all too often, The downside of using a poloriser is that it takes 2 stops of light away so your shutter speed will be affected and you will need to keep and eye on it so as not to get camera shake in your images, You can use a poloriser like a ND filter where waterfalls are concerned to slow the shutter speed down and get the blurry effect on water, All in all a great addition to any kit bag but only use it when necessary

p.s i would like to thank Jeff Lefevre for the use of his well manicured hands in the top photo

1 comment: