Empty London

Today I tested out my new B+W 10-stop ND filter. Yeah that’s right, 10 stops! That means it damps the light intensity by 1000x, so a 1/100 second exposure becomes 10 seconds. Actually, mine is more like 11 stops, which is a 2000x filter. What this does is it lets you blur out anything that moves – clouds, water, cars, people, whatever. You can use this just like a bokeh effect to isolate the subject matter, or at least that’s the idea!

My plan was to shoot some of the busiest tourist spots in London, using 30 second exposures to get rid of all the people and stuff. It didn’t work quite as well as I had hoped – people tend to stand still as well (I basically need exposures that are long compared to the amount of time a tourist spends sitting down, which means I need to get another filter and start stacking these guys). Still, I quite like the results. I’m sure there is something really awesome I could do with this filter, I just can’t quite figure out what it is yet.

I really like the shot of Westminster Palace with the sky and river blurred. It looks completely different from the shot I took without the filter. It lacks contrast though, and I can only guess that’s because I shot towards the sun with a piece of glass in front of the lens.


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