I always believe that digital photography is infinite.
Between the variations of camera bodies and lenses, and the combinations of ISO, aperture, shutter speed and white balance that are possible, you can create millions of different photographs even if it's the same view or composition.
On top of all of that, there are countless accessories, flashes, lights, gels, and for the purpose of this page…. filters….that can expand and enhance the already countless possibilities of digital photography.
When I moved to Southern California I was looking forward to expanding my photography equipment, and trying new things. Somewhere in all of the websites, blogs and YouTube videos that I see/read about digital photography, I learned about neutral density filters. If you’re not a photographer or photography enthusiast, the best way to describe neutral density filters…they minimize and lower the effect of the brightest light that’s trying to enter your lens while creating your photograph. A better description: a neutral density filter is like putting a pair of sunglasses on your lens. It evens out the light within the photograph so that no part of the image looks too white or “blown out.”
I was curious to see just how effective they could be, so I headed to Samy’s Camera on Fairfax one day and purchased two Tiffen Neutral Density filters – a 67mm 0.9, which means it blocks three stops of light, and a 77mm 0.6, which blocks 2 stops. I had fun experimenting with them early on in 2014, and use them in a few of the sets within this site. In particular, the images within the page: Eddie: At the Top, were created with these Tiffen neutral density filters. Also be sure to view the gold/greenish image of the hazy Los Angeles skyline in 2014 Extras (it was not possible to create the depth in that image without the help of the filter).
As for these images below, these shots were from the first day that I owned the filters and tried them out down at Venice Beach. I entitled this page, "neutral density filters to the rescue," as a joke, to say that the constant bright sunlight of Southern California was ruining my abilities to take evenly lit photographs outdoors. The sunlight was not that bad, but I could see the difference and results of using the filters right away: