Don’t forget your polarizer! Must-have filters for landscape photography


posted Thursday, May 19, 2016 at 12:05 PM EST


There are a wide variety of filters out there, some of which are critical for landscape photography, others of which might not be so necessary for the majority of shooting situations. Photographer Josh Cripps has released a video breaking down different types of filters and suggests which ones every landscape photographer ought to have on hand in their bag.

UV filters, sometimes known as protective filters, are incredibly common, but Cripps says that they don't have much utility for landscape photography. If you really want to have the protection that a UV filter offers, by all means, use one. There are definitely situations where they make a lot of sense, like if you're shooting in a sandstorm or other condition where there could be debris flying all over the place.

What about a polarizing filter? Cripps sums it up nicely, "The polarizer is pretty much the only filter whose effects you can't replicate in Photoshop - this is a must-have for any photographer." While you can easily make the sky bluer in Photoshop after the fact, you can't remove reflections very well during post-processing which is one of the primary uses of a polarizing filter. 

Solid and graduated neutral density filters also have a lot of utility for landscape photography. He discusses them both in the video above, so be sure to check it out. If you're interested in solid neutral density filters, I wrote a Caffeine Priority post about my experience using the Lee Big Stopper.

If you liked this video from Josh Cripps, check out his YouTube channel to see more and visit his website.

(Seen via Digital Photography School. Index image.)