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  1. #11

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    Great reading, thanks for the links!

  2. #12
    kb3lms's Avatar
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    Could anyone point me towards a source for a moderately priced set of the most important filters.

  3. #13
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    kb3lms,

    Look for a 'lot' on eBay, or find separate filters from different buyers if the deals are there. Look for a Tiffen, Hoya, B+W, Heliopan or other quality filter. More precisely, just don't buy one of those cheap filter sets on eBay where you get all the primary colors. High quality filters can be had for cheap by waiting and finding the right auctions. (some times the seller won't say the brand in the title so you've got to inspect the pictures!)

    Yellow, orange and red are the black and white standards, green and blue can be great also, a polarizing filter is something to consider as it is useful for color film as well. Every filter has a purpose; it's just a matter of when to use it.

    Also, check around local camera shops; maybe they're like mine and they've got a bargain bin with tons of miscellanea.

  4. #14
    2F/2F's Avatar
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    You do not need them at all. You use them only if you want their effects.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  5. #15

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    It's worth noting that from a creative stand point you use filters to determine the value of a particular colour on film -- eg a red poppy will be white on film with a red filter and very dark with a blue or green filter. But traditionally, it was advisable to use a yellow filter by default to counteract the over sensitivity of film to blue light. This is still the case with "traditional" non t-grain films. But t-max films in particular, and, even supposedly old school plus-x are much less blue sensitive than other films so a yellow filter does not do very much. It's also worth noting that some film developer combination s benefit from stronger colour filtration to regulate overall contrast-- for example I find that with tri-x in diafine an orange filter (normally a fairly dramatic effect) is about right as a default filter.

  6. #16
    AgX
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    Quote Originally Posted by holmburgers View Post
    Look for a Tiffen, Hoya, B+W, Heliopan or other quality filter. More precisely, just don't buy one of those cheap filter sets on eBay where you get all the primary colors.
    Recently we had here a report on a IR-filter of unknown brand name, where the glass did not fit the technical designation, and in effect spoiled the exposures.

    That may have been by purpose by just putting anything at hand in the fixture or just by mixing up glass sorts due to negligence.

  7. #17
    Pumalite's Avatar
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    " A loving and caring heart is the beginning of all knowledge " ~ Thomas Carlyle ~

  8. #18
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    Although not color filters per se, polarizing and neutral density filters are useful. I have seen others use colored gradual neutral density filters too.

    For starters, I would get yellow, red, green, polarizing, and 8x ND filters. Assuming your lens diameters are not too large, you can get step up rings for each lens in order to standardize on a single filter size. An alternative is to use Cokin filters which use their own series of rings plus a single filter holder that can be transferred lens to lens. They sell starter packs for B&W filters plus many other options.
    Jerold Harter MD

  9. #19
    Maris's Avatar
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    Why filters, which filters? Since I make photographs on panchromatic film I use a full range of colour filters from deep red to deep blue and all the in-between values too. In addition, a polariser and a selection of grad neutral and grad colour filters see plenty of use.

    Why so many filters? The problem is subject matter. It is consistently difficult to find subject matter that effectively supports the message the photograph is intended to convey. For example the visual equivalent of "drama" could be a gothic castle against a black sky (a cliche yet still persuasive) but even after the castle is found the chances of a black sky (gathering thunderstorm?) are nearly zero. The deep red filter delivers the black sky and visual "drama" is there for the taking.

    Similarly a high key photograph suggesting light, heat, air is easy to find behind a deep blue filter looking at a seascape on a cloudy day.

    Every full colour scene is actually many scenes all nested together like russian dolls that can be unpacked with colour filters so that their individual "look" can be used for expressive purposes.
    Photography, the word itself, invented and defined by its author Sir John.F.W.Herschel, 14 March 1839 at the Royal Society, Somerset House, London. Quote "...Photography or the application of the Chemical rays of light to the purpose of pictorial representation,..". unquote.

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