By continuing your visit to this site, you accept the use of cookies. They ensure the proper functioning of our services and display relevant ads. Learn more about cookies and act

Not yet registered? Create a OverBlog!

Create my blog

How to use lens filters

Lens filters modify the way light enters the camera towards the sensor. Even when current applications allow for (almost) any desirable edition, image pre-processing may be the optimal solution under some specific circumstances. In this article, find out how to use lens filters.

Coloured filters

Transmission of colour Coloured filters allow for the transmission of its own colour, and avoid the transference of the inverse one. For example, yellow and orange filters will keep sand and skin almost unchanged, but blue skies will be strongly darkened (blue light blocked). This kind of filters is used mostly in black and white photography, since obtained colours are usually not realistic. Clouds, in the given example, introduce a dramatic contrast with the (darkened) sky. Grey filters A special case is grey filters, either uniform or degraded. Those are used only to reduce light intensity, and colour is maintained. This way, exposition can be made longer (waves and waterfall pictures) or rather, illumination above the horizon (sky) can be made even with the darker landscapes. Other colours (blue, green, etc) will have specific uses, in a similar way as warm ones.

Special case: UV / IR

Special cases of coloured filters are UV (ultraviolet) and IR (infra-red). UV filters
UV filters block the ultraviolet light so that only effective light intensity is used. Blueish or violet halos are eliminated in high-contrast images. The effect may not be visible in standard, amateur cameras. However, many people uses those filters as protection for the objective. IR filters On the contrary, IR filters will block all light except the infra-red one. This way, photos are produced by the heat information in objects. Typical IR pictures have a red tint, and living objects (plants, people) come out brighter that static ones (ground, walls, buildings).

Polariser

Finally, a third family of filters is the polarised ones. In many cases, those include the glass piece in a rotating ring so that the effect can be maximised or removed, without disassembling the filter. Circular polariser Circular polariser filters only allow for the transmission of light in one plane. Basically, sunlight is polarised and it is reflected in the same manner by all objects except for metallic ones, which produce a diffuse reflection in all planes. When the filter is placed parallel to the light plane, all light is transmitted. Then, glares and gloss are fully visible. On the contrary, if the filter is placed perpendicular to the light plane, glare is eliminated so that underwater rocks or fish, for example, can be visible. Window or glass reflections can also be removed.

Same category articles Cameras & photography

All about: Professional photographers of America

All about: Professional photographers of America

No photographic organisation in the world compares itself in size to the Professional Photographers of America (PPA), a not-for-profit international association. With close to 20,000 members, PPA is helping photographers around the world to improve their marketing skills, expand their creativity and access key resources to accomplish their professional goals. This article provides you with an overview of the Professional photographers of America.
Which Nikon lens caps and accessories are right for me?

Which Nikon lens caps and accessories are right for me?

This article looks at Nikon lens caps and accessories and gives you a little insight into some of the useful gadgets that are available and will benefit your photography. From the simple lens hood to optical filters, this guide will hopefully provide you with some useful information.
Where to buy used Canon lenses

Where to buy used Canon lenses

Buying camera equipment can be expensive, especially for beginners or hobbyists. One way to get good deals on cameras is to buy photography equipment from other hobbyists who want to move on to newer models, sell their used lenses, cameras and other gears. Find out in this article where to buy used Canon lenses and other brands of used SLR.
Where to buy Minolta camera lenses

Where to buy Minolta camera lenses

At one point in their history, Minolta was the largest camera company in the world thanks to its innovative technology such as auto-focus integrated into a camera body. Konica Minolta still exists today but they don't make cameras or lenses any more after passing the beacon onto Sony.