Author Topic: Better photos with a polarizer  (Read 766 times)

Offline mklotz

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Better photos with a polarizer
« on: June 30, 2018, 08:13:55 PM »
Here's a small photography tip...

If you've ever taken photographs in a museum where items are housed in glass display cabinets, you've probably gotten some very good images of the reflections on the glass rather than the items of interest in the cabinet.

Professional photographers (which I am most decidedly not) deal with this problem by using a polarizing filter on the lens.  I recently got an adapter ring so I could use the polarizer from my film camera on my digital camera.

This photo...



captures the reflections on our patio door while this one...



taken a moment later with the polarizer rotated to squelch the reflections shows what a difference a polarizer can make.

Light from the sky is partially polarized (which is why polarized sun glasses make the sky look bluer) so a polarizer can capitalize on this to make better photographs when the subject is shot against a sky background, as might be done at an air show.

In this photo...



the camera has closed the aperture because of all the light from the sky; this underexposes the foreground image of interest. 

Adjusting the polarizer to block some of the light from the sky lets the camera's auto exposure open and capture more detail from the foreground...




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Regards, Marv


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Offline Admiral_dk

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Re: Better photos with a polarizer
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2018, 08:39:59 PM »
Thank you for the reminder. I already have one or two of those filters, but completely forgot about them .... ahem ...

Offline crueby

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Re: Better photos with a polarizer
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2018, 09:34:53 PM »
Polarizers can make a huge difference around glass, water, sky subject, anything reflective. Great tip!
For many of the modern cameras with autofocus, auto exposure, you need to make sure you get a circular polarizer rather than a linear one, or you can run into odd focus and exposure results. The circular ones sometimes are mark just CPL.