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FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting 
Thread started 12 Dec 2012 (Wednesday) 07:02
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Having a heck of a time with flash!

 
jeljohns
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Dec 12, 2012 18:28 as a reply to  @ post 15359354 |  #16

So how do wedding photogs light a dark reception with one OCF?




  
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JamesDurbinMedia
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Dec 12, 2012 19:34 |  #17

I can't speak for every wedding photographer but THIS wedding photographer (points to self) uses two 400 watt/second Uni400 strobes pulling house current to light a reception hall. On camera flash lights the subject only.

Back on topic, I'm not saying it can't be done. I'm saying its pretty much impossible to EVENLY light an entire room with just one light, unless its a small room, as there will always be falloff the further away from the light you get. But by adjusting your shutter speed to expose for the ambient light you can potentially get that effect, since you are effectively exposing for the foreground (flash) and background (ambient) in one image.


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jeljohns
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Dec 12, 2012 20:25 as a reply to  @ JamesDurbinMedia's post |  #18

I mention that because I just got done reading this article, and I still didn't get it:

http://melissajill.com …t-off-camera-flash-set-up (external link)




  
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jjaenagle
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Dec 12, 2012 20:28 |  #19
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what do you guys mean by chimping?



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jeljohns
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Dec 12, 2012 20:35 |  #20

Looking at the screen after taking a shot=chimping




  
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jjaenagle
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Dec 12, 2012 20:45 |  #21
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jeljohns wrote in post #15359860 (external link)
Looking at the screen after taking a shot=chimping

ha.. ok well i feel stupid now.



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digital ­ paradise
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Dec 12, 2012 22:44 |  #22

You shouldn't. How would you know. Flash can be a frustrating journey but once you get it, it is very rewarding.

The thing about flash is even it is attached to the camera they both have specific jobs. The camera does not care what your flash is doing and flash does care about what your camera is doing.

Camera is exposing the ambient light and flash is exposing your subjects. You need to think that way when you shoot.

You need to decide if you want ambient light in our exposure or not. In a studio situation you basically don't even to worry about it because your flash is the dominant light source. Set the shutter speed @ 1/200 and it will kill the ambient light. If you are shooting at a dark venue like wedding reception then shoot with a slower shutter speed - 1/60 to bring more ambient in. You asked how to light a dark venue. A slow shutter speed couple with really high ISO and open up the aperture as much as you can for the situation. This is how I do it with a single flash. It is about all you can do. Then I concentrate on flash output for my subjects.

Here is are a few examples of controlling ambient light and flash.

http://neilvn.com …chniques/9-more-examples/ (external link)

Here the author just changed the shutter speeds but left the aperture and flash power alone. Scroll down and see how much difference that makes. Dragging the shutter just means a slower shutter speed.

http://neilvn.com …s/3-dragging-the-shutter/ (external link)

A rule to start with. Shutter speed = ambient exposure. Aperture and flash power = subject exposure.

One last thing to remember. You camera's light meter has nothing to do with your flash in any shooting mode or any metering mode. It just worries about ambient light.


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jeljohns
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Dec 13, 2012 07:21 as a reply to  @ digital paradise's post |  #23

Ok, so let me see if I'm thinking about this right. Let's say my ambient exposure is 2.8 @ 1/60th of a second 800 ISO, but I have an 85mm lens. I would want a faster shutter speed for hand held. I go up one stop to 1/125, which means I raise my ISO to 1600. Now, if my flash was at 1/8th power I would go down to 1/16th because I raised the ISO one stop?

My brain hurts. :)




  
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René ­ Damkot
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Dec 13, 2012 07:27 |  #24

jeljohns wrote in post #15359818 (external link)
I mention that because I just got done reading this article, and I still didn't get it:

http://melissajill.com …t-off-camera-flash-set-up (external link)

That's one flash off camera and one flash on camera. ;)

I put the other speedlite on my camera pointed straight up with the lightsphere on it.


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Dec 13, 2012 07:48 |  #25

jeljohns wrote in post #15361280 (external link)
Ok, so let me see if I'm thinking about this right. Let's say my ambient exposure is 2.8 @ 1/60th of a second 800 ISO, but I have an 85mm lens. I would want a faster shutter speed for hand held. I go up one stop to 1/125, which means I raise my ISO to 1600. Now, if my flash was at 1/8th power I would go down to 1/16th because I raised the ISO one stop?

My brain hurts. :)

If I were you, I'd try using ETTL for now; that way the flash exposure system will handle all the "thinking" for you until you feel more comfortable with balancing ambient and flash exposures. Also, in your situation you really don't need to worry about the ambient exposure. Go to the max. flash sync speed for your camera, which will generally kill the ambient light, and rely on flash entirely. I think I'd go with advice you got earlier in the thread and drop the umbrella for now and instead do a bounce flash off the ceiling and/or walls. Use flash exposure compensation and/or ISO adjustment to get the amount of light in the image you want/need. If you can't get good exposures using that approach you've either got a really huge room or a really weak flash.


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huntersdad
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Dec 13, 2012 07:59 |  #26

Try this as this is how I really learned and got to understand flash (using the picture of your dog):

- Take the camera and get the exposure for the room without the dog using M mode (center the meter)
- Either leave as is, brighten the room (overexpose), or darken the room (underexpose)
- Add dog
- Put flash in MANUAL mode and start adjusting the flash by 1 stop per exposure (1/1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16, 1/32) but make sure to leave the flash where it is

One of those will light the scene as you want it.

Now repeat, leaving the flash where it is set - both power and location - and start changing the shutter speed. Change one varible per set of pictures - move the flash back, increase the ISO, and so on.

As you review the pictures, you'll actually see what changing each variable does, which is easier to learn from sometimes than reading a book or some lessons. Once you get a grasp of what each variable does, then you can start changing 2 variables and so on.

For your dog picture, I would meter the room and then make it about 1 stop darker, move the flash back just a hair and dial the power down a little, maybe even raise the flash up in the air a little higher and let it shoot down towards the dog from the front.


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Curtis ­ N
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Dec 13, 2012 07:59 |  #27

jeljohns wrote in post #15361280 (external link)
Ok, so let me see if I'm thinking about this right. Let's say my ambient exposure is 2.8 @ 1/60th of a second 800 ISO, but I have an 85mm lens. I would want a faster shutter speed for hand held. I go up one stop to 1/125, which means I raise my ISO to 1600. Now, if my flash was at 1/8th power I would go down to 1/16th because I raised the ISO one stop?

My brain hurts. :)

You're still, for some reason, concerning yourself with the ambient light level, despite the fact that no one in this thread has recommended that.

Put the camera in manual mode, forget the ambient light, and forget the camera's meter that measures ambient light. Now you can concentrate on flash exposure and where to aim the flash head for best results.


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jeljohns
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Dec 13, 2012 08:05 as a reply to  @ Curtis N's post |  #28

I concern myself with ambient light because I want some of the mood of the background to show, I don't want to overpower the whole scene with flash. I want the flash to elevate the light yes, but not take over...not sure if that makes sense.




  
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René ­ Damkot
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Dec 13, 2012 08:20 |  #29

If the flash is "overpowering", you have too much flash and/or too little ambient.

Flash exposure is determined by:

  • flash power & distance to subject
  • aperture
  • ISO


Ambient exposure is determined by:
  • Amount of ambient light
  • aperture
  • shutterspeed
  • ISO


Obviously, if the flash is too much, you can turn it down a bit.

The only way to vary the ratio flash-ambient (if flash and ambient are constant) is via the shutterspeed.
Use a tripod if needed.

If your subject isn't illuminated by ambient (lights in the background for instance). there's no risk of motion blur (in the subject), only in the background. And you might get ghosting.

Old post on the subject:
https://photography-on-the.net …php?p=6129682&p​ostcount=3


Edit: Good advise by huntersdad.

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jeljohns
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Dec 13, 2012 08:32 as a reply to  @ René Damkot's post |  #30

So I DO need to be concerned about ambient.




  
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Having a heck of a time with flash!
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