Learning about 10-Stop ND Filters

Still Learning

I really need to start learning how to get the best out of my, recently, purchased Heliopan 10-stop ND filter. I have seen heaps of amazing long exposures using 10 stop filters and I wanted to see if I could emulate what others have achieved. So far, I have only done a couple of test shots nothing fantastic.

I noticed that there clouds in the sky this morning and the wind was picking up so I decided to head into the city. All I needed now was somewhere with large expanse of water. I decided that St. Marys Cathedral and Hyde Park would be perfect location for some experimentation. The aquatic centre in front of St. Mary’s Cathedral has two large pools of water and there’s also a massive fountain in Hyde Park.

St. Mary’s Cathedral

EXIF data for all three shots: ISO 100 f/22 20s 19mm

My goal today is to get some shots with dynamic cloud movements, “smooth as glass” water with awesome reflections. Hopefully, I have managed to achieve what I set out to do. Next I decided to take a few shots in portrait mode.


EXIF data for all three shots: ISO 100 f/22 20s 17mm

In the second shot, I dropped the tripod down so that it was just above the height of the pool and also moved it towards the centre of the pool. There is no colour cast with the Heliopan 10-Stop ND filter.

Banding issue

EXIF data for both shots: ISO 100 f/22 20s 17mm

Here’s a problem I discovered if you get too much direct sunlight, downside of aiming at the sun. Notice the distinct vertical band just off centre towards the right hand side of the photo. I just used a LR3 preset “cold tone” to try and minimise the impact, it is still there but not as obvious. It was rather hard to judge the timing as sometimes the sun would pop out from behind the clouds as they move by.


EXIF data for both shots: ISO 100 f/22 15s 16mm


I just love the movements of the clouds behind the cathedral, for me, it really makes the photo. There was some human traffic but thank god the long exposure took care of them.


LT3_19271 LT3_19278

EXIF data for both shots: ISO 100 f/22 15s 16mm


Hyde Park

It was hard to get good position here as there were quite a few tourists milling around the fountain trying to get their holiday snaps. There was also tons of tiny school kids passing by wondering what I was doing. Besides my choice of positions was limited as I wanted St. Mary’s Cathedral in the background.


EXIF data: ISO 100 f/22 20s 16mm


I think that these two shots are my favourites from today. I really like the movement of the clouds away from me. I love the smooth glass-like look of the water in the fountain.


EXIF data: ISO 100 f/22 30s 16mm



EXIF data: ISO 200 f/22 30s 22mm

This was my last shot of the day as it looked like rain was coming so I quickly packed up, walked down to The Rocks where I met a friend for a, well earned, large cappuccino.

St. Marys Cathedral & Hyde Park

Map picture


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