Long Exposure Photography
All lovers of classical photography linger on the wonderful dream of soft focus images with tack-sharp focal points evident in classic large format analog photography. We meditate on these images and marvel at the subtleties of the full zone system as perfected by Ansell Adams. Purists know that this capture and dark room magic will never be duplicated in whole (or at most) by digital photography.
However, due to reciprocity failure in film with some long exposure techniques, digital has it all over analog in the now popular long exposure images ranging from thirty seconds to three minutes or longer. A successful shot is one taken with cooperative clouds that melt into a mysterious mist juxtaposed against an appropriately distressed static object, then finished off with the glistening flat sheen of water in the foreground. Digital photographers have found their own unique voices in long exposures that work best taken at mid-day and made possible with advanced neutral density filter systems.
Alex Wise, Sharon Tenenbaum and Colin Holms are a few of the many photographers who specialize in long exposure and all of them have eBooks, hold workshops and have inspirational portfolios filled with examples.
Here’s a short list of trend-setting photographers who have perfected these techniques: