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PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2008 12:15 pm 
Thanks again for your compliment TelexStar.

Yes there are many practical uses for the full ND. This could bring us back to the main theme of this thread, as it is wonderful for blurring water in the entire frame as there is a uniform light reduction.

Other uses for a full ND are in travel photography. I don't mind taking in some people in my shots, but if you prefer to take photos of buildings without people in the frame, then an ND is useful to a certain degree. With the reduced light from the ND, you are able to use a longer shutter speed. The theory behind this is the amount of light reflected from people is so much less than from the surrounding. This trick is only achieved when using minutes of exposure, rather than seconds.

And the most useful application of an ND is when you're shooting in a very bright environment and would overexpose the image.

I have both, and they are fantastic to add to your kit for outdoor photography; you will find that the ND grads are more landscape orientated because of the nature of looking for a horizon to match the graduation.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2008 12:42 pm 
I hate to continue this off topic and I do apologise to Drossic....maybe you or a kind moderator could modify the title to include "filters"??.....but I have to ask....the thing I don't get with ND Grads is...what do you do when the bit where the sky meets the land isn't perfectly horizontal?? I read that if you overlap too much then you make that bit of the land too much darker than the rest of it and if you don't overlap it enough then you have a bright line of sky where it meets the land!


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2008 12:56 pm 
I prefer to get the sky right and the land a little dark, then all I have to do is use a little bit of post-processing to brighten that up. Overblown highlights are harder to correct than something that is underexposed, so that would be how I'd tackle that problem. There are many variants of ND grads. The key is to select an ND grad that hasn't a too strong a transition in the middle, or even better, has a smooth transition zone, such as one that gradually gets softer from top to bottom with no discernable line in the middle. This gets rid of the problem that you describe.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2008 4:38 pm 
It's very interesting how everyone develops their own "habits" or ways to accomplish the same thing.

I personally haven't caught on to these ND grads for that very reason: alignment. I may do multiple exposure and do some tone mapping or spot-meter and post-process.

Maybe I've watched too much CSI Miami..lol..every single outdoor shot they have on that series has such a heavy grad filter and it looks horrible to my eyes. The same was the case in the old days with Miami Vice - Michael Mann really loved his grads as well..lol. Oh, and nearly every single postcard from Miami looks that way as well. Having been to Miami and felt the oppressive humid heat and seen the utterly washed out/bleached and sun-blasted city, I can't say I blame them..lol.

Anyway, pardon me for digressing..as you can see I have deep psychological barriers against these grad-filters..lol.

The bottom line to me is "whatever looks good" so don't get me wrong. There are millions of great shots out there where I wouldn't even know that a grad filter had been used. I just tend to use other methods.

Cheers :-)


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2008 8:40 pm 
ChinaMark wrote:
I hate to continue this off topic and I do apologise to Drossic....maybe you or a kind moderator could modify the title to include "filters"??.....but I have to ask....the thing I don't get with ND Grads is...what do you do when the bit where the sky meets the land isn't perfectly horizontal?? I read that if you overlap too much then you make that bit of the land too much darker than the rest of it and if you don't overlap it enough then you have a bright line of sky where it meets the land!


No problem chinaMark. I'm soaking all this in...(Grin) I started a new thread "blurring Waterfalls at Firery Gizzard". It has my first try at blurring
waterfalls. Of course I didn't use a ND filter so I'm over exposed. However I just realized I had a filter like what you have been talking about. A Cokin Grad nd Filter I bought at a Yardsale with an old cramera kit.


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