Motion in water as a compositional element

by Douglas Hoffman on October 13, 2021

Creating portraits of nature that evoke emotion is my goal and to do that I often have to manage light. One of the ways to do that is to use Graduated Neutral Density Filters made by BreakThrough Photography. As most of my work is by the ocean where there is an obvious horizon, the tools I use most often to manage light include a variety of Hard Graduated Neutral Density Filters. There are times, like when inside a forest that the horizon is not obvious. In these situations I use Soft graduated neutral density filters. Graduated filters come in 2, and 3 stop increments. In the middle of the day when the light is intense, 3,6, and 10 stop neutral density filters are used to manage light.

The starkness of the Lava and topography captured my attention. As I stood there enjoying the setting, the sound of the water rushing in and out of the cauldron played a like a symphony. I decided to use a 6 stop filter in order to slow the water down enough to make it like like silky foam. In this way I used motion as part of my composition.

Learn to use filters and manage light in a private workshop. Check out more beautiful fine art photographs here.