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  1. #1
    Re Member LeeIs's Avatar
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    My greatest challenge - back lit

    I saw this pic today that was stunning and back lit. I just couldn't believe it. For the life of me I can't solve this mystery. If i shot that, the foreground woulda been totally black. I checked out the description the person put on and they said they used "5 stop graduated ND filter" I'm posting the pic below. Now does that filter have anything to do with what i'm talking? If it does can u please explain how it works Basically how can someone shoot a pic like this? The only thing I know is to use Fill Flash. but I don't think they used that here judging by the distances. Please help
    Last edited by LeeIs; 10-10-2008 at 12:59 PM.
    Liban

    "There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have." Nelson Mandela

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  2. #2
    Seasoned Amateur WesternGuy's Avatar
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    Talking Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    Go here and scroll down to the bottom of the page. Hopefully this gives you an explanation.

    http://www.weatherscapes.com/techniq...l&page=filters

    Cheers,

    WesternGuy

  3. #3
    Moderator Skyman's Avatar
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    Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    a ND or neutral density filter is a filter that reduces the amount of light entering the lens without affecting the colour. These filters can be bought in different levels (ND1, ND4, ND8 to name a few) the effect of these filters will vary, but each level on a filter represents roughly a one stop reduction in the amount of light entering the lens. A Graduated ND filter works the same way, but one edge of the filter will be darker than the others. In this way the amount of light entering the lens from the bright areas of the photo can be balanced with the dark areas of the photo. It used to be quite common to get coloured graduated filters to enhance sunsets for example. Cokin produce quite a variety of graduated filters in addition to the neutral density ones (such as the graduated tobacco filter) with the advent of photoshop, layering and hdr these filters are being less and less utilised, but it is a skill certainly worthwhile developing if you have the time and inclination.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Dylan8i's Avatar
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    Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    a graduated nd filter simply darkens part of the frame. so youd cover the sky with the dark half and the forground would be exposed normally. but the dark half would block out alot of the light, thus bringing the light and dark areas much closer together, and can be shot with out problems.

    you can also shoot two frames, exposing one for the sky, and one for the foreground and merge them in photoshop to get the same effect.
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  5. #5
    Sports photo junkie jorgemonkey's Avatar
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    Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    A graduated ND filter is basically darker on one side, and gradually gets lighter on the other side. If you have it so the darker side is on top (as in the image above), it will bring down the exposure of the bright sun, while keeping the exposure at the bottom of the frame the same
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  6. #6
    Re Member LeeIs's Avatar
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    Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    Ok, it's much clearer now.. Thanks for the help guys, I think i understand the principal. But if you look at the photo, the filtered part is slimmer than the rest. So I guess they have the graduated filters at different positions as well ? or is it just even. starting at no filter and going to a D8 gradually through out the entire lense? or does the filtering start at different positions depending on the link.

    Westernguy, thanks for the link I'll hop there and read it! This sounds interesting . No more Silhouettes lol yeah!!
    Liban

    "There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have." Nelson Mandela

    Nikon Samurai #23 - The Alexei Ponikarovsky of PR

    Havana Cuba Photography

  7. #7
    Senior Member Dylan8i's Avatar
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    Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    theres round ones, that arnt very good because it is a fixed line. there are also square ones that you can move around ( its larger than the lense opening) to position the line where you want it.

    there are also ND filters that have a hard line between the dark and light sides, and ND filters that are all dark.
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  8. #8
    Re Member LeeIs's Avatar
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    Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    Ah, makes sense Dylan, Thanks! it's all coming clear now. I think i got a grasp of it. I'm gonna look in to these filters and read more. Thanks a bunch guys. u guys cleared up for me real quick!
    Liban

    "There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have." Nelson Mandela

    Nikon Samurai #23 - The Alexei Ponikarovsky of PR

    Havana Cuba Photography

  9. #9
    has-been... another view's Avatar
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    Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    ND Grad filters are worth their weight in gold for situations like this, as others have said. One thing that helps when positioning them is to use the depth of field preview button at whatever aperture you'll use with the shot (probably something along the lines of f8 or f11 in a case like this). This is different than looking through the viewfinder wide open - I don't know why, but it is...

    One thing - please don't post images taken by someone else. It would be better to post a link to the shot rather than the shot itself. This is out of respect for the photographer and also due to copyright laws.

  10. #10
    Re Member LeeIs's Avatar
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    Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    Yeah i was wondering about that copyright stuff myself before posting this. I even put on a watermark of the photographer's name 'joseph' which wasn't on the original shot for that very reason. But i'll remove it now since the question has been addressed.

    This whole ND filter stuff is fascinating.
    Liban

    "There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have." Nelson Mandela

    Nikon Samurai #23 - The Alexei Ponikarovsky of PR

    Havana Cuba Photography

  11. #11
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    Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    I wish I would have caught this thread before the pic was removed. Is there a link to the photo in question?

    BM

  12. #12
    Re Member LeeIs's Avatar
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    Re: My greatest challenge - back lit

    just pm'ed u. check your messages.
    Liban

    "There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have." Nelson Mandela

    Nikon Samurai #23 - The Alexei Ponikarovsky of PR

    Havana Cuba Photography

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