My Tutorial on Shooting Long Exposure Black & White Images

While I was on vacation in Maine a few weeks back, I spent a day shooting with my buddies Scott Eccleston of, and Mark Hensley and while we were out shooting near Portland, Maine I recorded this short tutorial for their site on shooting long exposure black & white.

Besides this tip, has lots of great tips on there all the time, so make sure you head over and check out their site. Definitely worth it! Thanks to Scott and Mark for putting up with me, and for letting me share this with you guys. :)

  1. Scott, I have 9 B&W filters (my fav) and I have a tip: be very careful not to smug or get those dirty, it’s almost impossible to clean them without damaging them. I have went through 3 9 stop filters in 4 months! 1 was by a crash but 2 were from trying to wipe clean with a microfiber cloth. I now have 2 in my fold out Adorama filter bag that way if one gets dirty I wait to get home to clean it. They almost seem to have a powder coating that’s super easy to scratch.

    I would highly recommend the tri fold Adorama filter holders that will hold 6 filters each. I try to have my wife standing by to hold them by edges while I focus. At about $139 each one must be careful with them!

    Great video, KT

  2. Agreed that B=W filters are quite awesome. For those on a budget though, you can make one for mere pennies on the dollar using the glass from a welders helmet dropped into a filter ring. It takes a little jury-rigging, and the optical quality isnt as stellar, but great to experiment with.

    Also, with the shutter release – it’s often helpful to have one that locks so you don’t have to actively hold your finger down on the release mechanism. Make a note on your watch (or iPhone or Android or whatever), and come back after 3,4 or 10 minutes and unlock it to close the release. Because this is so heavily draining on the battery, it helps to do long exposures with a fully-charged batteries 9and have spares)!

  3. Thanks Scott, great tips. I saw this video several weeks back on the other Scott’s site and it was just as good now as it was then!

    Here’s another tip from another Scott (me) that I found useful when shooting with my B&W 10 stop filter. I use an app on my IPod Touch that really helps, it’s called ND Timer. You can set the shutter speed you are using, then dial in the the logistics of your specific filter, and it will tell you how long to leave the shutter open. Heck you can even stack filters as well. I’ve shot sunsets at almost 10 minutes before. That’s not good when your friends say they are ready to leave :~) Here’s the link to ND Timer:

    Just want to say THANKS for all you do, 99% of the things I have learned comes from you, Kelby TV, Kelby Training, and The Photoshop Guys! You Rock!!!!!

  4. Scott,

    There’s a great iPhone app named “Long Time” that calculates exposure settings. For example, you meter without the 10 stop filter, input the shutter speed and then input how many stops the ND filter is. Then it calculates what your shutter speed should be set to if using that ND filter. For example, if I tell the app that I have a 1/500 shutter speed without the filter, and that I want to use a 10 stop filter it will tell me that I need to use a 2 min shutter with the filter attached. Takes the guess work out of it a little bit :)

  5. Hi Scott,

    nice how to, did already know most of it. You can if you are careful and use your hands as a shield still see something in the viewfinder. I can with a F2.8 lens, my A900 can even focus, sometimes. Anyway, as I usually shoot wide angle I just use MF and “guess” focus. At wide angle everything is pretty quickly in focus.
    See here photos of my last Iceland trip, most are taken with an identical BW110, but now waiting for my Lee (a bit better I think) Love to hear your comment;



  6. The B+W filters are amazing and I love this tip of shooting in daylight. I’ve used filters to get nice waterfall shots but now I’m heading to a lake to try some long exposures out.

  7. Hi Scott,

    thanks for yet another amazing tutorial. Was wondering whether there is any specific reason why ISO 100 is not ‘the least you can get away with’ on a Nikon…


  8. Thanks Scoot,

    What time of day was this video shot? I gave it a try today at the beach. I was atshooting at 10 sec. @ f22, 100 iso and was getting over exposed shots. I figure you must have been in much lower light levels to get a 2 min exposure.


Leave a Reply
Previous Post

We have a Guitar Raffle Winner, and Springs of Hope Will Have Two Working Vans, Thanks to You!

Next Post

Catch “The Fuji x100” Blues on the latest episode of “The Grid”