Sunday, June 22, 2008

Photography: How to Photograph Water

Got this great tip from a reader that i should write something about photographing water. And i think that is great ( i was feeling empty with no ideas for the past two days) idea. I combine the element of water into to a lot of my photographs, if you seen them you can know what i m talking about!

Now there are two question you should be asking yourself before photographing anything that has to do with water in movement and that is: Do i want to freeze the water or blur it?

If you want to freeze the water, your leaning towards using faster shutter speeds or do you want to blur the water, then your going to have to use slower shutter speeds.

But how do i freeze water during the night or freeze water in general?

  • Use higher ISO
  • Use a flash
  • Use a smaller f-number (larger aperture)
With those concepts in mind you are going to be able to freeze water pretty much at any given time and light condition you will find yourself in. But i m a big fan of blurred water and i think so are many people out here as well.

So how do i blur the water, to give it t that dreamy effect?
  • Use slower shutter speeds
  • Larger aperture (to increase the shutter speed)
  • Use a tripod or hold the camera still
This will render a very nice effect to your photo it will give it some what of an unrealistic element to your photo which i personally just love.

Now there are times where you just wont be able to freeze the water and then you just have to go for the other option, which is blurring it which is never wrong either.

Using filter to help the blurring of water:

There is a filter which is called a neutral density filter or ND filter that will reduce the amount of light that will come into the camera, thus allowing the flexibility for longer shutter speeds without overexposing the image on a very bright day.

Adding the element of water to your images:

Adding the element of water to images is something i do quite often, this is because i live close to the ocean and have grown up with it, and i love it and i also think it adds that little extra to the images at time. The sun always sets over the water which often give s a nice clear background, which is very easy to use if your lining up a shot etc. Work with the water try to combine it in good way with your photographs. Use a Polarizing filter to reduce the glare you would normally get of the water which can ruin the photograph.

I just recently picked up a Polarizing filter and i m loving it, still need to get a ND filter.

I hope that helps to understand the very basics of shooting water. I m going to start to think about a very good thing to write about, if not always dig into the archives and take a look at some of the older posts!

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