Do We Need To Use Camera Filters?

Do we need to use camera filters?

Filters are not necessarily needed for every photograph; in fact, many if not most can be made without them with no loss. But if they are not used when needed, the quality of the picture will surely suffer. This is especially true when doing black and white photography. It is always useful to look at your scene or subject through a succession of color filters to see whether any of them produces an apparent improvement in the separation of relative brightness. In scenic color photography, it is worth trying the use of a polarizing filter to see whether it improves the rendition of the sky or whether it usefully cuts haze. In either black and white or color photography where there are reflections visible in the scene, it is worth checking to see whether the use of a polarizer will improve the picture.

It may seem like a nuisance, at times, to dig out and use a filter, but, if it is correctly chosen, its advantages far outweigh the disadvantages. The following suggestions are worth adhering to:

  1. A filter should be used only when it serves a positive purpose.

  2. The type of filter must be properly chosen to suit that purpose.

  3. At purchase, attention should be paid to quality of manufacture (cheap glass filters can be a poor bargain).

  4. The filter must be correctly mounted on the lens.

  5. With ground glass and reflex cameras, the final focusing should be done with the filter in place on the lens.

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