How to Get Creative Images by Using On-Camera Filters

Since digital cameras came into our lives like a storm a decade ago we photographers became more dependent on post processing programs and many times prefer to achieve the needed result by retouching instead of using on-camera products and in-camera settings. "I'll just fix it in post" is something we all say to ourselves during photoshoots, but it's not always the right or smart thing to do. This video gives a short overview of some of the less known lens filters many photographers don't even know exist and shows how it can elevate images in no time.

The two most popular filters out there are the UV filters and the ND filters and they need no introduction. But what about colored filters? or the fog filters? There are so many less-known filters that can do some pretty interesting things that can give you shooting options you never had before. 

The filters mentioned in the video: 

Lee Filters 4x6" Graduated Mist Resin Filter

Lee Filters 4x6" Pale Tint Resin Filter Set

Lee Filters 4x6" Mist Clear Center Spot Resin Filter

Lee Filters 4x6" Sunrise Resin Filter Set

Lee Filters 4x4" Fog 1 Effect Resin Filter

Formatt Hitech 4 x 4" Soft Clear Movie Mist 1 Filter

Fader Filters 72mm Mark II Variable Neutral Density Filter

The filter holder shown in the video is the LEE Filters Foundation Kit and it can hold up to 3 different filters at once. 

These are just few examples for filters you can use to give your images the edge, and save a lot of editing time later. Have suggestions for other unknown filters that really help you with your photography? share them in the comments below. 

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3 Comments

Ralph Berrett's picture

They remind me of cokin filters which I have not used in years. When doing video I could see some use for them. Stills not as much, I never like softening filters when it came to capture even during the film days. If you use those filters you are committing to that look.

I am not that comfortable with doing that with still because I can get similar with PS. But with video it would be easier to shoot a clean clip first then one filters. Because video is more a pain to manipulate, at least for me.

Jon Wolding's picture

I only use glass filters... and only if they don't noticeably soften (or otherwise degrade) the image.
Learned the hard way several times over (resin/plastic filters, cheap fader-ND filters, etc.)

I love filters... some of them. The softening and mist filters remind me of Glamour Shots, not really a huge fan of them. The UV and density filters are amazing though. I prefer to use filters rather than "I'll fix it in post" because it takes forever in post.