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Great danbachmann 2005-02-21 0:05

Excellent composition with the figures, road, trees and hills. The exposure is pretty good too. My only suggestion for improvement would be to try a neutral density graduated filter to give some tonal range to the sky.

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Old 02-22-2005, 01:20 PM
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Enia Enia is offline
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Default To danbachmann: hello

Hello Dan and thank you very much for your critiques...
can you please define more specifically what do you mean by the neutral density graduated filter?

thanks a lot
Eugenia
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Old 02-23-2005, 01:31 PM
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danbachmann danbachmann is offline
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Default Graduated Neutral Density (GND) filters

The need for a GND arises mostly in landscape photography where the difference in brightness between the land and sky can be great - often too great for your film or digital to handle. Without a GND, you either end up exposing for the sky OR the land, at the sacrifice of the other. For example, in a composition where 2/3 is land and 1/3 is sky, if you exposed for the darker land, then the lighter sky would be significantly over-exposed, and vice-versa.

A GND filter is quite simple - it's just a piece of plastic or glass with a darker (neutral color) part that fades to clear. The best GND filters are rectangular and made to fit a slotted holder so they can be adjusted up or down in front of your lens. This allows you to position the darker portion precisely over the bright sky, which makes it closer in brightness to the land (in technical terms, we would describe the brightness in stops of light). This balancing of exposure results in a smaller range of overall brightness in the photo, which your film can record accurately. This is especially important with slide film, which has little exposure latitude (ability to handle a range of brightness). I should note that when properly used, most people would have no idea that a GND filter has been used. This is a subtle filter that makes your photo look more like what you actually see.

There are a number of companies that produce GND filters including Singh-Ray, Cokin, Lee and Tiffen. For a long time I used the affordable Cokin filters, but I've recently switched to Singh-Ray. Though the Singh-Ray filters are expensive (about $100US per filter), they are high-quality and truly neutral (Cokin's often produce noticeable color shifts). You will have a few choices to make when you purchase your GND filter - whether you want a 2 or 3 stop filter, and a soft-edge (fades) or hard- edge (abrupt) gradation. Start with a 2 stop, soft edge - you're likely to use this one most often. You'll also need a filter holder for it - I use the Cokin P-series, which is practical and affordable. With adapter rings, it can be switched between lenses, and can also be used with numerous other filters."
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