Photography is defined as the activity where we capture images through different approaches. These approaches can be defined as landscape, macro, street photography, and portrait shots. Our camera can detect the subject’s light through different distances. If we try to capture the horizon, we will notice that the image’s foreground is more vivid than its upper ground. This is where we should use the camera lens filter.
If we want to include images in our website, we can choose the right materials for our camera to produce more desirable effects. We can also post our pictures online for the netizens to see.
In digital photography, camera lens filters differ from one another according to their purpose. Lens filters have the capacity to fix the lighting exposure, balance and enhance the color. They can also add image’s effects, reduce reflection, and protect lenses as well. We can use lens filter in landscape photography.
Filters come in different sizes and shapes. There are circular filters that you can screw into the camera. You can mount these filters directly on the lens filter thread. Circular filters also range in diameter and thickness.
Square filters come in different sizes and are usually paired with a filter holder. This type of filter is widely sought after by landscape photographers. You can directly screw a filter holder through the lens filter thread.
We can stack two or more square filters in a filter holder to add color effects and for enhancement, but this kind of stacking can also degrade the image quality.
Rectangular filters, like the square filters, are also used in landscape photography. You can move the rectangular filters up and down on their holder. Circular filters can render vignetting while the rectangular can balance the image’s contrast.
The following are the types of camera lens filters:
UV or Haze Filter
This filter limits the level of UV rays hitting the lens. We must consider that it should be made of a high quality glass material (with multi-resistant coating or MRC) so that it is not easily scratched. Nowadays, most of the digital camera sensors have already a built-in UV/IR filter in front of the lens. The primary purpose of using this filter is to simply protect the lens.
Polarizers balance the light exposure under the sun, giving our image bluer skies and vivid colors. This filter can reduce reflections and haze and is perfect for capturing rainbows, horizons, tree canopies, and wet sceneries (ponds and lakes). Polarizing filter can be linear and circular.
Circular polarizers have the capacity to adjust the image’s saturation if we rotate the lid. Linear polarizers, on the other hand, can make the autofocus have metering errors when we use them in DSLR cameras.
Neutral Density Filter
If you try to capture the subject around extreme light, you will notice that there are areas where the light seems to burst. The burst and uneven distribution of brightness in an image are what we call the “overexposure”. To balance this out, you need the neutral density filter. This type of filter blocks the penetration of light in the lens, enabling you to capture the image in longer seconds. ND filter or neutral density filter is ideal for capturing cascading waterfalls, crashing sea waves and the diffusing of the clouds in the sky.
Graduated Neutral Density Filter
Like the neutral density filter, GND or graduated neutral density filter can also balance the overexposure of an image. Unlike neutral density filter, the GND filter has only a half dark-shaded part. The shaded part can cut the penetration of light with the help of proper ISO and shutter speed settings. This filter is perfect for capturing horizontal landscapes where the sky light and the land lightings create imbalance.
Graduated filter comes in different shapes like square and circle. This filter has a half-tint part, creating a more dramatic effect in the image. It helps set the mood in an image.
This filter is for macro photography as it simply enhances the details of the smaller images. Close-up filter is cheaper than macro lens, but may diminish the image’s quality.
This type of filter gives the image special effects like infrared effect that mimics the look of a snowy landscape. There are also cross star filters that are ideal in capturing city lights. We can also create dream-like images using diffusion filters.
We must remember that proper camera settings and filters work hand-in-hand for a perfect image.