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June 2, 2010 / nicotvandenberg

Giving Your Lenses Some Shade!

Protecting Your Glass will SAVE Your Ass!

For the past two weekends I have been on two productions, Decomposing Wayne and Acid Bath, where all scenes were to be shot outdoors using mainly available light, and only using reflectors when needed. I know what you are thinking where were your HMI’s or 10′ x 10′ silks. Well unfortunately I did not have the gear available to me in my arsenal. However what I did have available was a set of ND (Neutral Density) Gradients. For those who are unfamiliar with these filters they are simply a filter that has ND on one half of the filter and gradually (Gradient) has no ND applied. These filters do wonders for your image when shooting outdoors. I know most of us have been in a situation when shooting a subject outdoors and have had your subject perfectly exposed and then the sky is just blown out. So this is where the ND Grad comes in and saves the day! Now the top half of your frame including the sky will be properly exposed, maintaining cloud detail as well as maintaining the proper exposure on the subject. ND Grads can be applied directly to the lens however if you have a matte box available with filter trays that would be preferable. And that is exactly what I did for theses productions. I was using the RedRock Micro Matte Box, along with 4″ x 5.66″ filters provided by Chater Camera Rentals. As you can see from the samples I have provided we were able to expose the entire frame properly with no major over exposures. And what us is beautiful about the filter trays of the Matte box is that there are two trays allowing you to use multiple filters. Lastly, with the RedRock Matte Box it also allows you to rotate the filters in any direction that you need. Take a look and watch the tutorial video supplied by RedRock if you would like to better familiarize yourself with their Matte Box and filters.

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