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Thread: Does anyone use GND filters on B&W film?

  1. #1

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    Does anyone use GND filters on B&W film?

    Hi all,

    Does anyone use Graduated Neutral Density (GND) filters on B&W film?

    Iím thinking no, but just wanted to ask. It seems like it would work just fine but Iíve never tried it. Actually thatís not true. I did it once before and it was a disaster, but that had nothing to do with the GND filter. My brain lapse was the cause of that crash and burn.

    Anyway, if the answer is no, then is it safe to say that the use of B&W colored filters is the answer to the GND filter option used with color films?

    Thx!!
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  2. #2
    Maris Rusis's Avatar
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    Re: Does anyone use GND filters on B&W film?

    No GND but I sometimes use a Grad Red to lower the blue sky tone and pop the clouds a bit. The advantage is that ground level shadows are not darkened like a solid red filter tends to do.
    Photography:first utterance. Sir John Herschel, 14 March 1839 at the Royal Society. "...Photography or the application of the Chemical rays of light to the purpose of pictorial representation,..".

  3. #3

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    Re: Does anyone use GND filters on B&W film?

    Quote Originally Posted by AdamD View Post
    Hi all,

    Does anyone use Graduated Neutral Density (GND) filters on B&W film?

    I’m thinking no, but just wanted to ask. It seems like it would work just fine but I’ve never tried it. Actually that’s not true. I did it once before and it was a disaster, but that had nothing to do with the GND filter. My brain lapse was the cause of that crash and burn.

    Anyway, if the answer is no, then is it safe to say that the use of B&W colored filters is the answer to the GND filter option used with color films?

    Thx!!
    The only GNDs I own are center filters, but the principle is identical. GNDs are as good with B&W film as with colour film, and plenty of people use them. The use of colour filters with B&W film (usually referred to as contrast filters) is different, although sometimes the effect can be sort of like having a selective ND.

    Do you know how colour filters work with B&W film?

  4. #4

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    Re: Does anyone use GND filters on B&W film?

    Yes I have color filters. A yellow #15, Yellow Orange #25? and a Red. I might have the numbers wrong.

    I also have a couple GND filters. A 2-stop reverse and a 2-stop soft. I’ve often though the 2-stop soft combined with a Red or Yellow Orange would be good. I live in the Phoenix area and I’ve got more bright blue sky than I know what to do with! For color it works wonders. I think I’ll give it a try!
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  5. #5

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    Does anyone use GND filters on B&W film?

    Absolutely. My most used gnd is a 2 stop graded (hard). Even if b&w has more latitude I find it better to tame it to get the best out of it in post processing. But if itís not a sky (or the scene doesnít conform to the filter) then I donít sweat it and shoot without. I wonít use it for 1 stop and 3 is usually too much, becoming unreal.

    Usually used in combination with a yellow, orange or red filter.

  6. #6

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    Re: Does anyone use GND filters on B&W film?

    That’s awesome. That’s exactly how I was hoping it would work. Now I just need the sun to rise and I’ll give it a shot.
    Anything in life worth having is worth sharing.

  7. #7
    loujon
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    Re: Does anyone use GND filters on B&W film?

    Quote Originally Posted by AdamD View Post
    I live in the Phoenix area
    Hey Adam you may want to put some of your local information in your personal information page so members can answer you more accurately plus you can hookup w/ other LF photographers in the Phoenix area to go out shooting with and you may find a personal hands on coach for help/guidance if needed.

  8. #8
    Corran's Avatar
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    Re: Does anyone use GND filters on B&W film?

    Yes. I also use the darkslide on occasion as a "GND" - if the exposure for the foreground is 2 seconds, I put the DS in front of half the lens for one second to get a 1-stop reduction in exposure in the sky or top of the image. Of course this doesn't work if the exposure times are too short. Especially useful for reflections which usually have about 1-stop less light in the foreground.
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  9. #9

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    Re: Does anyone use GND filters on B&W film?

    Quote Originally Posted by Corran View Post
    Yes. I also use the darkslide on occasion as a "GND" - if the exposure for the foreground is 2 seconds, I put the DS in front of half the lens for one second to get a 1-stop reduction in exposure in the sky or top of the image. Of course this doesn't work if the exposure times are too short. Especially useful for reflections which usually have about 1-stop less light in the foreground.
    Very ingenious!

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