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Today the sun decided to show up but I knew it would not last long. I decided to go to the beach in the morning and test some of my new gear, even if the conditions were not exactly ideal.

I’ve recently got a few filters for my Tokina 11-16mm, and one of them is a neutral balance filter. It works by reducing the amount of light that your camera can gather, which means it allows to increase the duration of the exposure. A longer shutter speed means that moving subjects such as clouds and flowing water will be captured in a way that clearly shows their movement, but a NB filter cannot do miracles. Most of the times when you see a cool looking picture of the sea with flowing waves you can bet it was shot in the early morning, late afternoon or on a cloudy day.

Today was as bright as it can get, but I still managed to get a decent result.




The sea was relatively quite (low tide and almost no wind) and an exposure of half a second managed to capture some of the foreground movement.

This second picture does an even better job at showing the flow of the sea:



I prefer the first one mostly for the gush of water against the rocks, but I prefer the flowing effect of the latter.

The problem with long exposures is that if your picture is slightly too bright it can be easily fixed in post processing, but in order to get the exposure length that I was looking for a NB filter is not enough:



This kind of long exposures during the brightest hours of a clear day would require a very expensive NB filter, and I’ll pass.

NB filters are great for waterfalls. If you’ve been following my blog for a while you may remember I’ve had an entry about a problem that I had with overexposure: https://randomibis.wordpress.com/2013/12/29/the-making-of-recovering-overexposure/

Even though I managed to fix the problem I was not satisfied with the result because it required some heavy editing. Next time I’ll be able to get the proper long exposures and work on a more realistic photo.