Quick Photography Tip for Long Exposure Photography

Block the viewfinder

When you’re shooting long exposures with a strong ND filter, or you’re using the self-timer or firing the camera remotely, then it’s worth blocking the viewfinder and eliminating any light that may get inside your camera.

If you don’t, then there’s a good chance that stray light will enter the viewfinder and affect the exposure. In the worst examples – typically when you’re using a 10-stop ND filter – you can end up with a ghostly glow in the middle of the image. This can happen even when you’re shooting with Live View rather than the viewfinder.

High-end cameras have a built-in eyepiece blind, but most DSLRs have a viewfinder cover that can be attached to the camera strap and swapped with the viewfinder eye cup when required.

Holding your hand close to the viewfinder or draping a cleaning cloth over the top of the camera works just as well though.


Kevin A Pepper

Kevin is a photographer and educator based in Waterloo, Ontario. His first love is photographing nature, regardless of the season or weather condition; the Ontario landscape and its wildlife are his inspiration. But you will also see other styles of photography in his portfolio. From street photography to urban exploration of abandoned buildings and architecture, he loves to capture it all with his camera for his corporate clients and his growing personal portfolio. Kevin’s images have been featured in Canadian Nature Photographer, PHOTONews Canada, Photo Technique Magazine, The London Free Press, The Weather Network, and National Geographic Online. His diverse client list includes the City of Cambridge, Olympus, GORE Mutual, TVO, and African Lion Safari. Kevin also operates “Northof49 Photography”, a company launched in 2012 dedicated to teaching amateur photographers through International and Canadian-based workshops. In the coming year, Kevin will be leading workshops in Iceland, Mongolia, Tanzania, Venezuela, Provence, and numerous destinations across Canada. Website: www.kevinpepperphotography.com