Thanks! I appreciate that. Although expensive, I prefer B+W MRC because they are easy to clean and also because they do not bind on onto my lenses. I know that Hoya HMC are just as good or better optically, but the aluminum (I think) rims feel icky after using B+W. For this reason, I would rather choose my filters wisely because they are expensive. I use UV (for protection) and Yellow mostly so I was looking into expanding my system.
Originally Posted by Bruce Osgood
Yes to green, Polarizer, yellow, red +/- orange, blue.
You want a colour to be darker than what it looks, use its opposite on the colour wheel.(blue sky darker use yelloworange or red)
You want a flower to look lighter, use the same colour filter.( yellow dandelions whiter use yellow)
I prefer the older version of the B&W filters that are thicker on the front end, more to screw two together. They are usually only single coated but it seems enough.
"There are a great many things I am in doubt about at the moment, and I should consider myself favoured if you would kindly enlighten me. Signed, Doubtful, off to Canada." (BJP 1914).
Re: bw contrast filter use and recommendations
Don't forget a polarizer: it can darken a blue sky (depending on the angle of the sun without darkening the greens (as a red filter does).
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I would suggest the Kodak Databook on filters, Amazon lists two used (ca. 1953) for less than $10. These little phamplets have taught me more about filters for B/W film than anything else. They give the traditional Wratten numbers as well as the newer numbers for the filters. The yellow (K2, or 8) tends to record the eye view most realistically on films like Tri-X. The other filters are more dramatic. If you have purple flowers then you might use a blue (C5, or 47) to bring out the flowers from the green foliage. Or red (A, or 25) for red flowers. The most common for lanscapes depending what you want for sky effects to terrestrial are usually K2 yellow, G deep yellow, X1 green and A red. Of course I have gotten good results with B/W with an 85C also. I tend to hold the filters up to the subject when choosing and only look at contrast between objects. If I really like the subject I may make multiple exposures with different filters.
There is a difference between a shaky or out-of-focus photograph and a snapshot of clouds and fog banks. —Erwin Schrödinger
Really? Not that serious about photography? Just by choosing to work with a film camera these days suggests the opposite!
I prefer convenience and simplicity over "optimal" results. I just want to slap on a filter and go because I'm not that serious about photography.
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I have a small filter set for my Canonet and am working on assembling a similar set for the small Nikon kit I'm putting together (Currently just an FM2n with a 50/1.8 and a 55/1.2 that pulls double duty for night work on my D300).
For the Canonet, I've settled on: medium yellow, red, light green, a polarizer, and a small assortment of NDs I got in a bundled purchase of somewhat uncommon 48mm filters (from this site, I believe). In low light (anything darker than a heavily overcast day) I go without a filter at all, but if it's daylight and decently bright, I like to add the yellow filter as a general rule to boost contrast a bit in landscapes. It's not overwhelming, but the difference is notable. If the light is very bright, I'll go to an ND, or use the red for a more striking effect.
For the Nikon kit, I currently only have a dark yellow. I plan to add to this: Dark orange, yellow-green, a polarizer, and a few ND.
Colored Filters to Alter Subject Density of Photos Shot on B&W Panchromatic Film
Listed by subject color, (filters to lighten), (filters to darken) in current Kodak Wratten numbers.
Red (lighter 29, 25, 15), (darker 47, 58)
Green (lighter 58, 15, 11, 13), (darker 47, 25)
Blue (lighter 47), (darker 29, 25, 15, 58)
Blue-Green (lighter 47, 58), (darker 29, 25)
Magenta/Pink (lighter 29, 25), (darker 58)
Purple (lighter 47), (darker 58)
Yellow (lighter 15, 25), (darker 47)
Orange (lighter 15, 25), (darker 47)
Back in the distant past when I used to do landscape and nature photography, I found that the very best filter to use was a Minus Blue (Kodak Wratten no.12) filter. It is really great for bringing out skies and foliage (especially when there is a lot of haze about).
It has a filter factor of 3 (which is much less than a deep orange or red), gives a significant result but is far less 'theatrical' effect than a red filter.