Not that I want a return of the early spring of last year that lead to the hot and dry summer, but I would welcome a little springtime sunshine. Despite the gloomy skies today, I took a walk through Old Town and set up my tripod near the fish ladder. I wanted to try out my new variable neutral density filter on some running water. I have a couple cheap neutral density filters, but I upgraded to the variable one so that I can carry just one per lens. This one goes from very light to very dark, even darker than my darkest stand alone filters. These filters let you take a longer exposure photo in the daylight without sacrificing too much color and detail. You do need a tripod to keep the camera from moving. There are various purposes for such a filter, but the most common seems to be taking photos of running water to create a flowing effect. The photo above is a long exposure at the darkest setting. The photo below is actually a composite of seven photos taken at different exposure levels and merged together to get a more uniform lighting in the final photo. The overcast lighting outside was so dark and gloomy today, but at least I got to test out the new filter.