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The Trick to Getting Richer Colors

One tool the pros use to get richer, more vivid colors is the polarizing filter. Of all the add-ons used by landscape pros, the polarizing filter is probably the most essential. This filter screws onto the end of your lens and it basically does two things: (1) it cuts the reflections in your photo big time (especially in water, on rocks, or on any reflective surface), and (2) it can often add more rich blues into your skies by darkening them and generally giving you more saturated colors throughout (and who doesn’t want that?). Two tips: (1) polarizers have the most effect when you’re shooting at a 90° angle from the sun, so if the sun is in front of you or behind you, they don’t work all that well, and (2) you’ll use the rotating ring on the filter to vary the amount (and angle) of polarization (it’s also helpful so you can choose to remove reflections from either your sky or the ground). Once you see for yourself the difference a polarizing filter makes, you’ll say something along the lines of, “Ahhhh, so that’s how they do it.”

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