Tips for flash photography

ALL GREAT PHOTOGRAPHS HAVEgreat Lighting. The lighting can be either natural or artificial, and sometimes it combines both. You must make the most of what you have as a photographer. Although inspiration can be captured on any day, the best outdoor photography is done during the first two hours and the last two hours of daylight.

Lighting in photographs

The rising sun and setting create warm light that saturates colours and gives a scene a ‘punch’. Shoot between these hours if possible and work quickly, as the light is only perfect for a few seconds.

Also, be aware of the light’s interaction with your subject. Mike suggests that you “look at the way the light hits a scene around your subject.” Pay attention to the shadows and how the light reflects on the objects around you. Is it easy or difficult? You can try this simple trick: Place your hand in front of you, and rotate it 360°. This will give you an idea of the light hitting larger objects around you. If you find something you like, try to place yourself and your subjects in the same position.

Learn how to use contrast to your benefit. High-contrast scenes are often the best for dramatic lighting. It would help if you looked for dramatic backlighting and situations where your subject is not in direct sunlight but is still amongst the dark shadows. You will be amazed.

Artificial light can also prove to be a lifesaver. Streetlights provide dramatic lighting, while firelight creates warmth. Flash can be used to create high-impact images, but flash photography is complicated, so don’t try it if you aren’t confident. Most pro-DSLRs with a mid-level price tag have a small flash, but powerful accessories flashes can be purchased if you need more light or creative lighting.


A simple way to make portraiture lighting is to bounce light off a wall or roof if you have an accessory flash. You can angle the flash up and hold your hand at 45 degrees over the top for a warm feeling.

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