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'Long Exposure's' advice for a novice.

NEWMANP 10 1.6k 574 United Kingdom
17 Aug 2011 8:43PM
some good examples in there, and some average ones too.

first thing.

if its sunrise be there 1/2 hr before the sun hits the horizon or sunset 5 mins after it sinks, the ambient light is pretty low but the colour will still be around and more importantly you wouldnt have to deal with overbright sunballs affecting the automatic exposure.

at these times, without hot spots, automatic metering can be quite accurate trying to pull everything back to an 18% grey tone. and because the sky will only be a little brighter is less likely to need graduated filters or at most a 0.6- 2 stopper to hold back the sky.

if you, and im unsure with your camera, select the lowest iso you can get say 100iso and the smallest aperature say f16 and your exposure will be about 2 secs and that will get a fair smoothing out of the water. for the effect in most of the examples you will need a nd filter any where between 5 - 8 stops. almost all the examples and certainly the ones with blurred skies will have used the lee big stopper filter (10stop).

you will need to be on a sturdy tripod with a cable release. some of them have had extensive post processing with hdr and layer blending tecnniques. look up P.Morgan paul has some stunning examples and i believe that he did a tutorial somewhere which would help you.


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Henners88 9 204 United Kingdom
18 Aug 2011 8:54AM
Thanks Phil, Paul was recommended on the first page too and his images are stunning.

I'd like to get to these locations before sunrise but my wife who is also keen on photography is not so keen on getting up early in the morning lol so we will venture to these places as the sun goes down I would imagine. I appreciate all this advice and hopefully I'll get some kind of satisfactory results, although I understand this stuff take a lot of practice. I don't have an ND 10 filter so that may be something I invest in within the next couple of months. I do have an ND 8 however so I'll experiment with that for now. Just had a quick read up on HDR and found a simple tutorial which suggests not using a subject that is moving, but I assume it can be used with water that is fairly still? For example lakes, as opposed to sea crashing over rocks? Sorry if I am sounding thick here haha.

Henry Smile
NEWMANP 10 1.6k 574 United Kingdom
18 Aug 2011 9:26AM
you can use one raw file and split off several exposures from that to get the effect you are seeking, dont try using consecutive frames.

the 8 nd is more than strong enough, i didnt use any at all on my last few uploads.

wifes are no excuse, get up and do it and come back for breakfast. some of my best were taken at 4 am Grin

Henners88 9 204 United Kingdom
1 Sep 2011 10:39AM
Well I took all the advice given onboard during my holiday and produced some pleasing results in my view. We were really lucky with the weather and had some decent evenings with nice sunsets. I'm still learning all this and feel I can do better but really enjoyed experimenting. Mumbles and Gower is a beautiful area and it was my first time there. Langland Bay was where we stayed for the first half of the week and the lighthouse and pier provide nice subjects. I took this one of the pier which I had edited using a HDR style method:

We then spent the second half of the week in Tenby where I continued to try different shutter speeds and exposure levels. I took this one of the old lifeboat station in Tenby on a 30 second exposure and luckily the seagull in the foreground stayed perfectly still hehe. I don't usually like seagulls but I could have patted this one on the head and bought a bag of chips for staying so still hehe Tongue.

Thank you all for the advice given.
Henry Smile
Del73 7 5 Scotland
12 Jan 2013 4:42PM

Looking for some help with my Nd 10 Stop (Hitech) & post processing.
In this image, a kind of test shot, there seems to be a lot of pixelation at the top & bottom left. I want to convert it to black & white, l do that either through Silver Effex Pro2 or one of the PS options. The convertion to b&w seems to highlight the pixel bits, as black and white can do.
Is it caused by the filter?

Used: Canon 50D @ 103 second exposure, f/18 iso 100
17 Jan 2013 12:39AM
thank you for sharing

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