Magic Cloth at low light


Some long exposure fun from 2012

Tagged: , Iceland , ice , ice lagoon , beach , Magic cloth , Jökulsárlón , glacial laggon , long exposure , Breiðamerkursandur , Breidamerkursandur

“Buckle up, It’s going to be a bumpy ride”!

“If your life is not full of humbling experiences, you’re not letting go enough” – Tony Prower

Magic Cloth Photography

Magic Cloth Photography is a fantastic method to photograph a scene with high dynamic range.

Maybe you like to give more exposure to the shadows like a regular sunrise beach, the Magic Cloth Photography is a useful accessory to carry and flexible for your needs.

Magic Cloth Tricks


Be sure to choose the right equipment for Long Exposure photography. A lens with a Some lenses are so wide, such as Nikon’s 14-24mm. For low light and night, this lens is fine, but dark filters for day time photography becomes complicated.
Canon pro-DSLRs are perfect for Long Exposure photography.

  • Easy features and total manual mode
  • Amazing live view can fine focus stars!
  • Important settings can be edited with external buttons and dials.
  • The Red light on the back lets you know you are exposing.
Essential Gear Canon 5D  mark III Canon 5D mark III

Neutral Density Filter: (not at night, only in daylight)

I recommend round filters for wet atmospheres.

strong Tripod:

I have to get low down for foreground intimacy so extra flexibility are really nice characters to have on your tripod. Stabilize your tripod to make it heavy. Moving the Magic Cloth can introduce vibrations. A solid tripod is essential for high end long exposure photography.

Don’t raise the center column unless you really need to. The center column is the least stable part of the set up.

Sometimes a tripod has a hook under it, suspend things from it to give more sturdiness. Often Travel photographers carry a special tripod bag that they can fill with stones to give a better stability which will stabilize the tripod still – great for long exposure work.

Long Exposure photography info…


Shutter bulb:

Shutter speeds can be longer than the 30 sec your camera will allow. Having a Shutter bulb (sometimes called “Remote) will allow you to open the shutter: as long as your battery pack allows.

Magic Sock:

Pick a big cloth like a hat, or the same size black card. Should be able to completely cover the whole surface of the optics. Better to be Dark. A dark colour is preferable. You can normally make a straight edge out of any cloth.

Magic cloth procedure:


Use a dark filter or low light for a to acheive a long exposure, then over expose the image by two to three stops.

Shutter speed

It is easier to set a long Shutter speed. 2-5 sec requires a quick, but controlled action to cover the sky within a split second. 5-10 sec gives you a extra exposure of the foreground.

Magic Cloth Motion

In many conditions I bring the cloth down with a fast movement and up slowly.

Alternative ways

Vary the Motion to allow several short exposures of the sky, rather than one initial exposure (30 seconds or more exposures only).

Meter for the highlights and {multiply that shutter speed by 3 or 4|then x 4 to get the total exposure time.

See more Ice and Auroras on our Photo Tours.

Many thanks for visiting!

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“I really believe there are things nobody would see if I didn’t photograph them.”
— Diane Arbus

Have you ever felt so completely at one with the great outdoors behind a camera on a tour?

Photo blog Articles

Photo Blog : Magic Cloth Image focus – Glacier Landscape Link

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