Blurring water (slow shutter) -- I did it!!

Started 3 months ago | Discussions thread
JustUs7 Contributing Member • Posts: 886
Re: Blurring water (slow shutter) -- I did it!!

Appreciate the feedback.  Have to admit - I'm really proud of the above and probably show them off too much.  I made a great leap forward just this year in understanding some of this and in having the toys to do it, so I think i shot out of my league on those.

Correction from my prior comments.

The 4:16 photo would have been 1/4th of a second unfiltered.

The 52 second photo would have been 1/20th of a second unfiltered.

The app I use is LE Calculator. You can select the ND filter you're using. Select the shutter time the camera is giving you for a target exposure in Aperture priority. The app will show you how long to keep the shutter open with the filter on. I had it aligned wrong when I quoted the above.

Some "how to" info (from my limited and decidedly amateur experience):


- Set up my tripod, attach my corded shutter release, and compose my shot.

- Set the camera in Aperture Priority and select an aperture that provides the depth of field I want. Usually somewhere between 9 - 16.

- Set ISO to 100. If you leave ISO on 'auto', when you attach your filter - the camera will choose a much higher ISO to adjust image brightness.

- Pick my auto focus point and take a picture.

- I review to see what shutter speed the camera chose and check the histogram for blown highlights.

- If I'm happy with the above....


- Switch focus to manual so it won't change with the filter on.

- Turn off image stabilization in my lens.  People argue about whether this matters. I find IS on a tripod is looking to correct for movement that isn't there and can introduce camera shake. Other opinions differ and say that's an old problem that newer lenses don't have. I go by my own results.

- Switch from Aperture Priority to Manual settings (or Bulb* if I need longer than 30 seconds)

* Some consumer DSLR's don't have a Bulb mode

- Set my ISO at 100 and my Aperture where I had it for my set up shot.

- Attach my filter.

- Go to my LE Calculator app and plug in my filter strength (10-stop in my case) and shutter speed that the camera chose in my first shot.

- Set the shutter speed in manual for whatever the calculator said (or open the shutter and watch the clock count up until I reach the target time if over 30 seconds).

- Waive people off that are about to walk in front of my camera because they don't realize I'm standing there with the shutter open.

- Do it all again because those people ignored me.

- Light does change - so I'll adjust my shutter speed up or down with the filter on until I'm happy with the final result.  The calculator just gives me a good starting point.

One thing I learned about ND filters is some can introduce a bit of a color cast. Mine tends toward blue. You do have to edit this in post, which is another thing I use my test shot for. It's a target for correct color in my final image.

 JustUs7's gear list:JustUs7's gear list
Canon EOS 1000D Canon EOS Rebel SL1 Canon EOS RP Canon EF 75-300mm f/4.0-5.6 III Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS +3 more
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