Diffuser example

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by hankejp, Jan 25, 2009.

  1. hankejp

    hankejp TPF Noob!

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    I'm going to be getting a diffuser for my SB-600, but I'm hoping someone can show me an example of it. Perhaps a picture without the diffuser and then a picture using the diffuser on the same subject.

    If I have read correctly, the diffuser is used to spread the light from the flash making the subject look softer.

    Is this correct?

    Thanks gang.
     
  2. AlexColeman

    AlexColeman TPF Noob!

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    It softens the light so that you don't have harsh shadows.
     
  3. Big Mike

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

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    There are many flash accessories, some of them are quite different from one another and some of them are quite similar. Some work better in some situations than others. There really is no 'best solution' except to understand how light works.

    To soften light, you can do two things. #1 make the light source larger or #2 move the light source closer to the subject. That's it. You light won't automatically get softer by putting a piece of tupperware over the flash.

    Usually, the best way to soften the light from your flash, is to bounce it off of something like a wall or ceiling. This turns the bounce surface into the light source, thus increasing the size of the light source and making it softer.

    One problem with bouncing the light is that it can introduce shadows that you may not want. For example, if you bounce the light straight up and off of the ceiling, a human subject may end up with shadows in their eyes, just like they would if you were shooting them under mid-day sun.
    To solve this, many flash accessories are made to split the light and throw some of it forward while most of it is bouncing. A simple bounce card does the same thing.

    Some flash accessories spread the light in many directions in the hope that it will bounce off of many surfaces and come back to the subject from many directions. This works well in smaller rooms but wastes a lot of light when not in a place with no surfaces to bounce off of.

    Many people buy these flash accessories and just keep them on their flash in all situations. This tells me that they don't really understand what their accessory is doing. There are plenty of situations where using bare flash will give similar results but much more efficiently...and the more efficient you are with your flash, the faster it will recycle and the longer the batteries will last.
     
  4. Samanax

    Samanax TPF Noob!

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