Watch out for the Tara Effect Filter on Your Camera Lens!

The other evening we stood talking to friends who had just come up from the beach with their 17 1/2 year old dog, Tara. Tara has joint problems but still loves her walk by the water, every day. They throw sticks into the water for her so that she gets to do some swimming in the salt water. It's a kind of therapy and possibly one reason that she has reached that ripe old age with as much mobility as she has. If she were a human being she would be over 100 years old and yet she walks daily and runs after her sticks. And she managed to shake herself with considerable vigour… all over me and my camera. 🙁

I carefully wiped my lens with the edge of my (soft, clean) t-shirt and carried on down to our walk along the beach. I took a fair number of photographs of some of the birds by the shore and looked forward to seeing what I had got when I got home. And I saw… what we now call "the Tara filter effect". The photographs were all soft, gently blurred, as though photographed through a piece of plastic. I looked at the lens, and it was filthy from the smeared spray off Tara's coat. Oh well. Lesson learned. 😀

So, for this one, as I wanted to catch those drops flying off Joni's coat I was very careful to aim the lens at a safe enough distance. Let's hope the almost daily beach walks help her get to as ripe an age as that lovely old lady, Tara.

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19 Responses

  1. Thanks a lot +Christina Lihani – glad you like it.

    Bingo +Sarah Simpson – welcome to G+! It's great to see you on here, and it looks as if you have got things going nicely, with a profile pic, a public posting and a nicely laid out profile page. Look forward to seeing your next postings and images. 
    Of course you know where this image was taken. 😀

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  2. Thanks a lot +Four Feet Fotos – yes, a UV filter is the best (and absolutely indispensable) answer to potentially ruining a good piece of glass. Much cheaper than replacing the lens itself. Lessons can be hard to learn. I had a UV filter on mine, too but fortunately it was easily cleaned. 😀

    Maybe I should dig out those blurry pictures after all, +Janice Hackney 😀

    I might post one of those +Sumit Sen if I can find them (might have deleted them, will have to check). This was taken from a distance, so no lens fog!

    Thank you +Sunny Wu 

    Very wise and thanks, +Donna McClure 

    She does and thank you +Mari Luukkonen 

    Thanks +Christian Andreassen and she is a happy dog. This is not Tara, I should get a photo of her, if I can.

    She does look strange, doesn't she +Susanne Stelle – but it's just the shaking that makes her look like that. She is just a happy wet pup!

    I think they do, +Shelly Gunderson and that applies to this pup as well as to the old Tara.

    You are so right +Steve Kilbride – and I am glad that I have UV filters for each of my lenses that can use them (not for the fisheye, so we have to be super super careful with that one. :-/ ) It's not cheap, but what price peace of mind? And a lot less to replace one of those than a lens. 😀

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  3. You might want to consider purchasing a neutral filter for each of your lenses.  Basically I use them as lens protectors so that any dirt, finger prints etc. land on the filter and not on the lens.  A good filter isn't exactly cheap (mine were about $50 each) but they're a good option to protect your more expensive lenses.  🙂

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  4. Great shot and thanks for the story behind. I sure sounds like one happy dog. You always say that you cannot teach an old dog new tricks..yet I guess that this does not consider the Tara lense effect 😀 

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  5. I had a clear lens over my 24-70 when visiting Carmel years ago. The day was a bit misty when we were near the beach. I thought I'd taken care of the potential water spots from the mist. I later discovered spots still on that clear lens and nothing would remove them. Even the guys at the local camera shop were puzzled as to why the spots were so stubborn. I eventually replaced the protective clear lens with a new one. I suspect maybe the salty mist made some permanent effect on the glass, though I don't really know. =o(
    From that point on, I'm cautious of wet dogs too, and try to photograph them from a bit of a distance!

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