The Secret Weapon for Night Photography Is This Filter

Photography at night can bring mystery, viewer curiosity, and (when done right) rich color to your work.

It’s common knowledge that at night you should have a tripod and cable release at a minimum, but there’s one tool that’s considered a secret weapon among successful night photographers and that’s an intensifier filter. An intensifier filter (AKA red intensifier, light pollution killer and the technical name “didymium”) is a tool every photographer needs to have in their kit. Basically, the intensifier works by targeting the light emitted by common street lamps and dramatically reduces the muddy yellow glow as the light passes through the filter. What you end up with is a clean RAW file with rich color, and increased contrast and sharpness.

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How Photographer Steven Magner Uses a Lens Filter to Get a Special Effect in the Night Sky

Steven Magner gets his nightscape photos with a little help from the Hoya intensifier filter

Photographer Steven Magner’s interest in photography started at a young age when his grandmother bought him a Fujifilm MX-1200 for Christmas in 1999. He’s always been a landscape and wildlife photographer in Connecticut until he moved to Los Angeles to work as a graphic designer. It was there that he got into architectural photography and the effects of the photo bug’s bite grew infectious. Today, his wife refers to his camera as “his mistress.” Upon looking at his work, we were in awe of some of the stuff he made at night. His secret – a little filter from Hoya.

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