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Old July 5th, 2006, 02:57 PM   #1
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Trouble recording sunrises

Hi,

When I record a sunset/sunrise over water then the color in the water shows up terrific but the color in the sky is not quite as good. If I try to balance this with a graduated neutral density filter then the sky improves a ton but then the color is lessened on the water. Any advice on how to get the best color out of both? Thanks for your thoughts!!
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Old July 5th, 2006, 11:53 PM   #2
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What kind of ND grads are you using... and what size? If you're using a matte box, one possible solution might be a 3x4 color grad filter. However, experimenting with internal Custom Presets is a far more affordable way to go, since they're free.
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Old July 6th, 2006, 08:25 AM   #3
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Im using a Tiffen 72mm Graduated Neutral Density 0.6 filter. Also Im currently using the custom preset AC Pref1.
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Old July 7th, 2006, 04:34 AM   #4
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you should probably try a gentler grad filter like an ND 0.3 or so, what is likely happening with the grad is it is darkening the sky too much which is bringing the exposure up and the un-filtered half on the water is then being over exposed making it flatter and more contrasty
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Old July 8th, 2006, 08:05 AM   #5
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Jeremiah - I've found that using a polarizer filter when choosing water subjects almost always helps improve the footage.

Try to shoot dawns early and sunsets late - normally when the sun is tight to the horizon or partially obscured by it.

Often, sunset skies are even better after the red orb has disappeared, or prior to the orb showing above the horizon at dawn.

In most situations, the sunset footage will look better if it is under-exposed. Also try to boost in-camera colour settings (rather than in post).

An orange-grad or red-grad filter sometimes helps, or a full orange filter if you've split the scene between water and sky – although I prefer to have an unfiltered sunset if it is a good one.

Sometimes the water will be brighter than the sky portion of the frame, so instead of placing an ND grad filter in normal position, try reversing it so that the darker portion is over the water instead of the sky.
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Old July 10th, 2006, 11:39 AM   #6
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Good advice and, in lieu of using a color filter, you could also use the incremental color temperature switch on the camera. I do this a lot and I find it gives me control over the color that I couldn't get using a filter.
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Old July 11th, 2006, 12:06 AM   #7
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Here is a series of sunset shots taken a few days ago in San Juan Island. I played around with the incremental color temperature knob on the camera and also used a graduated ND filter to tone down the intensity of the sky.
Attached Thumbnails
Trouble recording sunrises-sunset1.jpg   Trouble recording sunrises-sunset2.jpg  

Trouble recording sunrises-sunset3.jpg   Trouble recording sunrises-sunset4.jpg  

Trouble recording sunrises-sunset5.jpg   Trouble recording sunrises-sunset6.jpg  

Trouble recording sunrises-sunset7.jpg  
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