I recently did a photo shoot with a friend and although we were hoping to get outdoors for some natural light shots, we spent the first half of our session inside waiting for the rain to let up. It was pretty dark out and there wasn’t a lot of light coming through the windows, so I was forced to use a flash for most of my shots. I don’t yet have external flashes and have to rely on my in-camera flash which, in many cases, can ruin a shoot. Thankfully, we were in a house with low ceilings so I was able to bounce my flash and I wanted to share the trick I’ve learned that enabled me to save what could have been a really unsuccessful shoot…
To get the lighting effects of flash, but not the harshness of it, it’s important for me to keep the flash from firing directly on my subjects face. There are external flashes that will swivel to bounce the light off the ceiling or the walls, and there are also light diffusers that will take the harshness out of a flash, but until I get these I have to be creative with the flash that came with my camera. So I take an index card or a piece of white paper and hold it in front of my flash at a 45 degree angle to bounce the light. It works wonders, and can be used with any flash, including those on point and shoot cameras. Here is the difference this method makes:
The lighting is harsh, and the poor little girl can’t keep from blinking her eyes!
Nice warm skin tones and open eyes!
Pretty simple, and the results are great!