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11-05-2009, 03:07 PM   #1
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Shooting into the sun without going blind

I've been having fun with lens flair lately.

What are some tips to avoid blinding ones self while shooting into the sun?

11-05-2009, 03:23 PM   #2
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Don't shoot into the sun, that's not how you get flare, flare comes from light hitting the element at an angle.
If it's hurting your eyes, it has the potential to hurt your sensor.
11-05-2009, 03:35 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kornbread Quote
I've been having fun with lens flair lately.

What are some tips to avoid blinding ones self while shooting into the sun?
Close your eyes???
11-05-2009, 03:38 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Damn Brit Quote
Don't shoot into the sun, that's not how you get flare, flare comes from light hitting the element at an angle.
If it's hurting your eyes, it has the potential to hurt your sensor.
Shouldn't be too big a deal with the short exposures necessary to get a good shot.
eg.


And yes, once composed, look away...

11-05-2009, 03:43 PM   #5
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Not to mention the risk of burning your conjunctiva & retina
11-05-2009, 03:51 PM   #6
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Swift 'overexposures' of the retina only do temporary damage (render you blind momentarily in that eye). It's the prolonged burning of the retina that will do it permanently - and I'm not sure there is any figure for how many seconds it would take to do this, so err on the side of caution...
11-05-2009, 05:00 PM   #7
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If you do put the sun in the viewfinder, avoid looking at it directly.
11-05-2009, 05:15 PM   #8
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Lens flare usually happens when the sun hits the sensor at an angle as has been mentioned, but it can shooting directly into it, like this



Sometimes it works well



Using an GND filter helps, like here



If it hurts your eyes, don't do it...it's the result of millions of years of evolution telling you what you are doing is not good for yourself.

11-05-2009, 05:26 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
Shouldn't be too big a deal with the short exposures necessary to get a good shot.
The jury is still out on that one Ash, I've heard tell that there is the potential for the sensor to be damaged in that way. I'm sure the occasional shot isn't going to hurt but the OP was talking like he wanted to do it as a regular thing. In that case, the potential for damage goes up.
11-05-2009, 05:41 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Damn Brit Quote
The jury is still out on that one Ash, I've heard tell that there is the potential for the sensor to be damaged in that way. I'm sure the occasional shot isn't going to hurt but the OP was talking like he wanted to do it as a regular thing. In that case, the potential for damage goes up.
But having said all that,wouldn't it also depend on the time of the day and year that you are taking a shot with the sun in it?At sunrise and sunset,the suns heat rays are not as intense as it would be during say midday in the middle of summer for instance.
11-05-2009, 05:46 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Barnster Quote
But having said all that,wouldn't it also depend on the time of the day and year that you are taking a shot with the sun in it?At sunrise and sunset,the suns heat rays are not as intense as it would be during say midday in the middle of summer for instance.
Why don't you conduct an experiment. Let me know your findings in about a years time.

I have no idea, I'm sure it would depend on a lot of things, how hot the sensor already was at the time, where in the world you are.
11-05-2009, 05:51 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Barnster Quote
But having said all that,wouldn't it also depend on the time of the day and year that you are taking a shot with the sun in it?At sunrise and sunset,the suns heat rays are not as intense as it would be during say midday in the middle of summer for instance.
Its not the heat (infared) light that can damage your eye, its the UV light that does the damage. This can happen anytime of the year, that one good reason why snow skiers wear dark goggles.

You can burn your cornea & conjunctiva with much less exposure that it takes to burn your retina.
11-05-2009, 05:57 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by ramair455 Quote
Its not the heat (infared) light that can damage your eye, its the UV light that does the damage. This can happen anytime of the year, that one good reason why snow skiers wear dark goggles.

You can burn your cornea & conjunctiva with much less exposure that it takes to burn your retina.
No I understand.I probably worded it incorreectly with heat rays to UV.Sorry!But still,wouldn't the UV rays be less intense at those times as I mentioned,(sunrise/sunset)?
11-05-2009, 06:07 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Barnster Quote
But still,wouldn't the UV rays be less intense at those times as I mentioned,(sunrise/sunset)?
Not necessarily. What is really dangerous early/late in the day is the fact that we can't see the U.V. light, but, since the light level is lower, we might think it is safe to look at the sun for longer period of time. It is kind of like a solar eclipse. Because the light level is low, some people think it is safe to look at the sun without protecting ones eyes. But the U.V. radiation is almost as strong as when there is no eclipse.

I hope that makes sense to you.
11-05-2009, 08:02 PM   #15
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You could get a piece of welder's glass and it over the viewfinder while you compose your shot.
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