Creative and technical advice.
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The names of our long exposure filters have nothing to do with their physical size and everything to do with creative options.
The Big Stopper & The Little Stopper are both available for our core 100mm System as well as the popular Seven5 System for compact system cameras. “Big” or “Little” refers to the light stopping power of each – not their size.
These technical differences translate to a lot of flexibility for your creative photography
Here the Little Stopper is used by Jeremy Walker to retain texture in the sea and sky while still giving a sense of time passing.
By greatly extending exposure times the Big Stopper has the effect of allowing anything that is moving in your image to become blurred or ghost like, for example clouds, waterfalls, rivers, and the sea.
The filter can also be used on cityscapes to blur people or on roads and motorways to blur traffic.
The Big Stopper
In this video fine art photographer Jonathan Chritchley demonstrates how to get the most from the Big & Little Stopper. Practical tips and creative inspiration for anyone exploring long exposure photography.
At six stops, the Little Stopper is ideal for those low-light conditions at the beginning and end of the day (when the Big Stopper's ten stops may prove too much), allowing you to enjoy increased flexibility with exposure lengths.
In many shooting conditions, this means that detail and texture in areas of movement such as the sky and water would be retained, while still conveying a sense of time passing.
The Little Stopper
Both the Big Stopper & Little Stopper can be used in conjunction with other filters such as Neutral Density Graduated Filters.
Other filters should be set up and positioned in the filter holder as normal before using the Big or Little Stopper, remembering to keep the slot in the filter holder nearest the lens free for the Big or Little Stopper.
|1 second||16 minutes|
|2 seconds||32 minutes|
|1,000th||15th of a second|
|500th||8th of a second|
|250th||¼ of a second|
|125th||½ of a second|
|1 second||1 minutes|
|2 seconds||2 minutes|
Use of the Big or Little Stopper may result in a slight colour cast. It's worth conducting some tests to learn either which colour-correction filters to use in conjunction with them, or which white balance settings to apply. If shooting Raw, any colour cast can be corrected easily at the post-production stage.
When making long exposures, film users need to take reciprocity failure into account. Different brands and speeds of film respond differently to long exposures, so always refer to the manufacturers' recommendations first. To be completely sure, carry out tests with your chosen emulsions and bracket your exposures.
Get up to speed fast with our videos that explain the LEE Filter System and how to use it
The Big Stopper (10 stops) & Little Stopper (6 stops) are both very dense neutral density filters. Other ND filters are also available from 0.3 ND (1 stop) to 0.9 ND (3 stops).
ND Filters can be stacked together, or used with other filters, so you can respond to almost any lighting situation.
When shooting digitally, light at the infrared and ultraviolet ends of the spectrum can be problematic. The ProGlass range of filters has been designed with this in mind. These glass neutral density filters are optimised for use with digital cameras, as they absorb more infrared and ultraviolet light than traditional ND filters. The result is a punchier image, with less discolouration in adverse lighting conditions.
Polarising filters are used primarily to reduce reflections. This can be useful when photographing skies, water, glass etc.
Reimagined for tablets these new eBooks take you through stunning landscape photos and the exact filters and techniques used.
Join leading landscape photographer Jeremy Walker for a day or weekend at our photographic workshops around the UK.
screws onto camera lens
attaches to the adaptor ring
slides into the filter holder
You can view all our videos with Closed Captions and Translations (beta) on our YouTube Channel LEEfiltersTV