Saturday, January 24, 2015

Round Up of Off-Camera Flash Advice

For the month of January, the 2014 version of Boost Your Photography: 52 Weeks Challenge will be focusing on light and lighting. (Interested in joining the 52 Weeks Challenge? We are also starting a re-boot version kicking off from the beginning: click here to join in for 2015!)

So far, we have looked at natural light and the influence of directional lighting, and tips for mastering on-camera flash. This final lighting post of the month is a round up of resources about off-camera flash.

Off-Camera Flash Basics

Last week's post, tips for mastering on-camera flash, laid out some of the basic limitations of flash photography, including the impact of the inverse square law and the influence of the location of your flash. The inverse square law still applies when shooting with off-camera flash, but you are now more in control of the location and direction of where your flash and other lighting is located.

The post pinned above, How to Soften the Light When Using Flash, has great tips for both on-camera and off-camera flash photography. The reason I am recommending it this week is that it provides a few basic diagrams for how to set-up your off-camera flash, with particular attention paid to the angle and direction of the light.

Tips for Better Shooting with Off-Camera Flash

This post pinned above, A Beginner's Guide to Working with Flash Off-Camera, provides a great overview of the different pieces of equipment that you need for working with off-camera flash, including recommendations for flash units, remote triggers, light stands, and light shapers or modifiers. The second half of the post shows how to set-up a basic off-camera flash shoot, including a comparison of the different power values of the flash itself. This is a great place to start for getting comfortable with setting up and using your off-camera flash unit.

This next post, titled Off-Camera Flash for Your Travel Photography, is a great resource for any type of flash photography. This post also provides an overview of the equipment needed for flash photography, with a focus on portability and usability for the traveling photographer.

The author then goes into detail about two different strategies for using your off-camera flash: to balance the ambient light and to underexpose for dramatic effect. Both are explained in detail with diagrams of the lighting set-up, a discussion of settings, and inclusion of the final portrait. A great resource to study!

Try Using Your Off-Camera Flash

This is the week to break out your off-camera flash unit and give it a try! If you do not own an off-camera flash unit, try using lamps or other continuous lighting sources to see how changing lighting position and strength can impact your photography.

Share a link or a photograph in the comments below, or consider joining the BYP 52 Weeks Google+ Community (or the new 52 Weeks 2015) to share your weekly photograph and see what others are capturing.

Boost Your Photography: Learn Your DSLR is available from Amazon. Get the most out of your camera with practical advice about the technical and creative aspects of DSLR photography that will have you taking beautiful pictures right away.
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