The majority of new photographers begin by relying solely on natural light. Some photographers prefer to learn and master flash photography as they build their style, while others refine and perfect the natural light approach. While there is no “right” or “wrong” way, even for photographers whose styles are classified as “natural light” or “bright and airy,” a strong understanding of flash photography is essential. A thorough understanding of flash allows a photographer to have complete control over a situation, regardless of the weather or ambient lighting. That isn’t to imply that all photographers should utilise flash; rather, they should have the knowledge and expertise to do so when it would result in a better shot or one that was more in accordance with their artistic vision.
Furthermore, flash photography does not have to be scary. To assist you, we’ve selected 9 useful flash photography techniques from our Lighting 101 session to serve as your guide, covering everything from how to use and operate a speedlight to full creative control of your flash. The goal of this tutorial is for you to leave with a solid understanding of flash photography that you can use to improve your skills via practise and experience.
Realize Why You Need Flash
Natural light becomes insufficient after a certain point. Here are five of the most compelling reasons to utilise flash:
- Control/Modify Light: While the sun is a powerful main light source, modifying such a massive light source can be tough, which is where flash comes in.
- Control the Amount of Light: When you’ve lost your natural light, there’s only so far your camera can push to keep the information in the image, which is where flash comes in to help.
- Control the Direction of Light: We can plan our shoots around sunrise and sunset, but what if you’re stuck shooting in the middle of the afternoon or late at night? You can flexibly modify the angle and direction of your light source when using OCF.
- Control the Quality of Light: The sun is a harsh light source for the duration of the day, with only a few techniques to soften it. With flash modifiers such as MagMod, you may create the exact quality of light you want.
- Control the Color of Light: When working indoors and having to bounce your flash to counteract the ugly tungsten lighting we see in most rooms, the ingenuity of flash exceeds the strength of the sun.