Switch to English Language Passer en langue française Omschakelen naar Nederlandse Taal Wechseln Sie zu deutschen Sprache Passa alla lingua italiana
Members: 68,702   Posts: 1,482,658   Online: 672
      
Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Shooter
    35mm
    Posts
    4

    Neutral Density grad placement

    Hi there

    I'm new to the forum and wondered if some advice could be sought?

    I love the sunset pics that people do that are done with ND filters both the hard and soft variety. However, I have always had difficuly placing a ND grad and I am unsure as to how it should be placed exactly in a pic.

    Of all the books I have on photography not one shows how you line up a grad filter on your lens I do know of the technique where you hold the DOF previez button, but I have seem to have difficulty seeing the filter coming into place. I'm short-sighted for one thing and I have used the adjuster on my camera to compensate for no glasses.

    Where exactly do you place each aspect of the filter?

    I would prefer to know how to do this properly rather than taking two images and merging them in photoshop!

    Thanks for any help

    Jools

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Louisiana, USA
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    1,325
    Stopping down the aperture is the way to do it but, I agree it's not easy to judge at first. Like most things, it gets easier with practice. My method is to start without the filter at all and slowly start moving it into position from the clear end to the graduated area. Sometimes it helps to compose the scene, remember the position of the horizon, aim the camera at a bright area and apply the filter.

  3. #3
    wildbill's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Grand Rapids
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    2,317
    Images
    140
    Cut a piece of black cardstock and fold it over the filter so the edges covers the thick portion of the grad down to the edge. Slide the filter down til you see the edge of the card where you want it. With soft grads, go slightly past the horizon so you cover it a bit. You should stop the lens down so that it's accurate. Also, for sunsets flip a grad over and try using the thick portion placed on the horizon.
    my 2 cents

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Shooter
    35mm
    Posts
    4
    Thanks for the replies

    Last question. I heard that you meter for the ground when using ND filters. Any ideas as to what you meter? Grass?

    In the summer I tried this and it seemed "OK" but a little too dark. I also had to fiddle with the shutter speed as my meter said one thing, but I reckon it was a stop and a bit either way

  5. #5
    Baxter Bradford's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Lymington, South Coast, UK
    Shooter
    4x5 Format
    Posts
    772
    Images
    102
    This is a really compex task to grasp and very abstract with the confines of a text based forum. Best to get someone to show you how.

    Soft transition grads can be less effective on smaller 35mm lenses. It is easy to pull them down too far on 4x5!

    Also in camera meters usually and understandably open up to compensate if left in Auto mode, thus moving all values from the intended. Different cameras react in different way. I did some tests on a workshop, where a 3 stop grad had effect of between 1/2 to 1 stop on some DSLRs.

    A spot meter is best way to proceed, but appreciate yet another piece of kit to buy and carry. However it lets you measure values to choose correct ND grad or grads in relation to element of scene which you want to be your mid-value.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Shooter
    35mm
    Posts
    4
    Thanks for the replt.

    I do have and did meter from the ground (grass) using a spot meter. I read somewhere (i know) that grass is a good reference for middle grey

  7. #7

    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Valley Stream, NY
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    3,216
    It is, as long as the light is not hard. Green grass can throw off some very bright specular reflections, making it look almost white.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Shooter
    35mm
    Posts
    4
    Thanks for all the posts on this.

    I have one last question if I may.

    Earlier on someone mentioned putting a piece of black card over the grey part so you can easily see the grad being slid into position.

    How far down the grey do you slide it for the horizon? Obviously the grey is graduated and this is the one thing that I have never seen an answer for in any book or fourm. I did see a pic on a website somewhere, but I lost the link

    If I knew how much of the grey should cover the horizon I would be very happy

  9. #9

    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Valley Stream, NY
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    3,216
    It really depends on the scene and how you visualize it when printed. There are no hard and fast rules for this. You need to play around with it a bit and select the best of the bunch.



 

APUG PARTNERS EQUALLY FUNDING OUR COMMUNITY:



Contact Us  |  Support Us!  |  Advertise  |  Site Terms  |  Archive  —   Search  |  Mobile Device Access  |  RSS  |  Facebook  |  Linkedin