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Photographic lens filters are amongst the most useful accessories for photographers and videographers when used for what they are intended for, if you use them for the sake of using them, or rather in the incorrect sense, then you are not doing your craft justice.

A lens filter can be best described as any element of glass that sits in front of the lens in order to manipulate the image and there are many different kinds available.

Here are the most popular lens filters and what they are used for:

  • UV Filter - A Filter designed purely for lens protection and has no effect on the image.
  • ND Filter - Neutral Density filters are designed to block out light from the lens to allow the user to achieve longer exposure times in brighter light environments.
  • Variable ND Filter - Also a Neutral Density filter, however, a variable one can be adjusted to the desired density.
  • Colour Filter - Colour filters don't alter the amount of light entering the camera that much but rather give the image a tint of colour for creative purposes.
  • ND Graduated Filters - Mostly used for landscape photography to match the exposure of the sky with the foreground.
  • Polarizer Filter - Arguably the most useful filter, used to saturate colours in an image, polarize a blue sky and get rid of non-metallic reflections.

Take a look at the video below by the YouTube channel: Brandon Van Son on A Complete Guide To Using Filters In Photography...

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