If you’re a landscape photographer who strives to capture great images in the camera, rather than resorting to post-processing, the quick tutorial below is just what you need. In barely 10 minutes you’ll learn what an accomplished pro says are the three lens filters you need, and how to use them.
Instructor Sarah Lyndsay is based in Alberta’s beautiful Canadian Rockies, and she credits the use of these filters for the stunning imagery in her portfolio. She also specializes in long-exposure photography—a genre in which lens filters can be essential.
Lyndsay demonstrates her tips using a popular Haida Magnetic Filter Kit, and she provides a link beneath the video where you can get a 10% discount. But the advice she provides is equally appropriate for employing filters of other brands. Just make sure that you buy high-quality filters so that you don’t degrade the optical quality of your trusted lenses.
Lyndsay’s favorites include a 10-stop ND filter, a six-stop ND, and a circular polarizer; and these three simple tools have always been in her bag for the past 10 years. As she says, “they cover all the bases I need.” So take a look at how she uses them throughout her photographic excursions in the field.
Surprisingly, the popular polarizer is actually the filter Lyndsay uses the least because it’s typically not appropriate for shooting photos with long exposures. But as you’ll see, it’s very valuable for other types of outdoor photography when you want to darken pale blue skies, remove distracting reflections, enhance saturation, and more.
On the other hand, Lyndsay’s neutral density (ND) filters play a big role when she employs slow shutter speeds to capture movement in the clouds, soft flowing water, and other long-exposure subjects.
Blue Hour and Golden Hour are the favorite times of day for just about all landscape photographers, Lyndsay included. You’ll see which of her two ND filters she uses most to when shooting just before sunrise and when the sun is about to drop below the horizon
The lesson also provides solid advice for making the most of 6X and 10X ND filters throughout the day. Along the way you’ll discover a variety of tips for nailing exposure, proper composition, and more. And the stunning images she displays provide all the inspiration you need to give her tips a try the next time you’re out in the field.
After watching the lesson head over to Lyndsay’s instructional YouTube channel where there is much more to learn.
And don’t miss a tutorial we posted earlier from another top pro, explaining how to use focus bracketing and stacking for landscape photographs with optimum sharpness throughout an entire scene.