Anyone good with indoor flash use?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Dartellan, May 2, 2010.

  1. Dartellan

    Dartellan TPF Noob!

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    Hello,

    I am shooting with a Canon 50D with the 580 EX speedlite. I have the plastic diffuser cap on the end of it, but the flash always seems a little harsh anyway, even when I point it at a 45 angle.

    Anyone have any better ideas on diffusing flash when indoors so it's not so harsh?

    ETA: I do a lot of indoor shooting at night in venues with high ceilings, so bouncing off the ceiling is not always possible.

    Thanks!
     
  2. sinjans

    sinjans TPF Noob!

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    post some pics with EXIF info and you'll get a better response. You could try bouncing the flash off of a ceiling or wall. You may need to manually adjust or underexpose your flash settings. A softbox may help. Make sue you post again with some examples. Cheers
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Yes, posting some examples will really help us diagnose the problem.
    I'm not exactly sure what you mean when you say 'harsh'.

    Usually, the best option for indoor flash is to bounce the light. You don't always have to use the ceiling, walls or anything else can work too. The 580 is a very powerful flash. You can bounce off some pretty high ceilings...especially if you crank up your ISO.

    Another trick to good flash photography, is balancing your flash exposure with your ambient exposure. For example, if you use the auto mode, the shutter speed won't go any lower than 1/60. In dark situations, this is likely to underexpose the ambient light (background) so you might end up with a subject who is lit by flash, but it looks like they are in a dark cave because there is very little ambient exposure. But if you keep the shutter open longer (use a wider aperture and higher ISO), you can get more ambient ambient exposure, which might balance better with your subject, making the flashed light look less 'harsh'.
     
  4. kami

    kami TPF Noob!

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    If you bounce at a 45° angle forward, you'll get that effect you described. I usually bounce straight up, or toward a wall behind me. And crank up your ISO as needed.

    If you shoot in venues with high ceilings you might want to invest in a better diffuser for example the Gary Fong diffusers.
     
  5. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I just threw up in my mouth a little bit. :puke:
     
  6. keith foster

    keith foster TPF Noob!

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    ROFL! Thanks Mike! :cokespit:
     
  7. Goontz

    Goontz TPF Noob!

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    :lmao::lmao:
     
  8. Scatterbrained

    Scatterbrained Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    This. I usually bounce the flash behind me or next to me.
    Niel Van Niekerk is a great reference. Try his book "on camera flash" or bounce around on his blog balancing flash with ambient exposure Neil vN – tangents , I've been learning quite a lot from his site.
     

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