A lens hood is a tubelike camera accessory that helps keep unwanted and overly bright light out of particular shot. It also protects lenses from unsightly fingerprints, dust and scratches. A hood easily attaches onto a variety of lenses. Photographers use them most often with telephoto lenses due to the reduced field of view with these long-distance shots. Most hoods are either round or flower-shaped and both help to prevent light rays and lens flares from entering a shot.
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Find a lens hood that matches your existing lenses. Look for the hood and filter size on the side or front portion of a particular lens. You can also take your camera into a retail shop to ensure you buy a hood that will attach onto the lenses you already own. Flower-shaped hood are more common when using telephoto lenses because round hoods may hinder the shorter field of view.
Attach the lens hood to your camera by screwing it onto the front portion of your lens in a clockwise direction. To remove the hood, screw in the opposite direction.
Shoot photographs with and without your lens hood attached to get a feel for the increased richness and sharpness you can achieve with a lens hood in bright-light situations. The lens hood will not hinder shutter speeds or aperture settings in any way.
Practice taking photographs with both types of hoods. Flower-shaped hoods are common because you can use them with telephoto and wide angle lenses. Round hoods, on the other hand, tend to keep more stray light out of a shot but can cause vignetting. In essence, there is no ideal lens hood, so practice using both of them so you know which one to use in real-life settings that are often far from ideal.
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