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Photographer's Secret Weapon – Vaseline! Impressionist Photography Techniques

How to create Impressionist Photographs
Landscape created by vaseline technique

Vaseline does wonders, not only for your skin, but it can also help you to create impressionist masterpieces. You can transform just about any subject into something interesting and exciting. If you like the soft, poetic look in your photographs this simple technique is for you.

You will need: a tripod, a skylight filter or piece of clear glass that will fit into your Cokin filter holder, (you can ask your framer to cut a few pieces of glass to fit into your Cokin Filter holder), vaseline, and a soft, absorbing cloth.

Step by Step Technique:

  1. Place your camera on a tripod and set it to manual focus.
  2. Compose your image.
  3. As you look through the viewfinder, smear the jelly in different directions, using your finger or a cotton bud, until you achieve the desired effect. (Horizontal strokes on the filter will reveal vertical lines in your scene and vice versa).
  4. Adjust your exposure settings and focus if needed.
  5. Release the shutter.
  6. Check the preview for the result. Repeat if necessary.

Note: Vaseline can damage your camera or lens if it gets on them so remember to wipe your finger.

Play with this technique for a while to discover how it works with a different subject and light condition.

Have fun!

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