Playing with Light, Inside and Out

I have a love/hate relationship with my camera flash. It is one of the reasons I so love my latest camera; a high ISO. If you don’t know what that means, it enables me to take photographs in very low light, without a flash. Over the years I have had it pounded into my head that using your flash on-camera is a bad thing, a big no-no, what not to do!!! And to be honest, it is true. My first few digital cameras actually came with little pop-up flashes built into the camera. Very bad!!

Now, even with a high ISO you will have times you absolutely need a flash. Or it may just be a shot that needs that extra punch of light. Have you ever seen someone taking pictures outside, in the sun, with a flash? There is a reason for that. What a flash can do is take a flat snapshot and turn it into a beautiful photograph with depth and richness. Yeah, that being said . . . then you have to learn how to master it.

I have taken a lot of time trying to figure out the best way to get that light into my shots without spending an arm and a leg. I am not really a portrait photographer, but I do occasionally take portraits.

Although taking photos of still life, things like flowers, benefit from lighting. This photo of a bee on a flower was taken in my back yard. There was sunshine, and I used my flash at low power. As well as this other photo taken indoors, and lit with a flash. It gave the shot dimension.

I always try to watch a few photography tutorials a month. I pay for subscriptions, so want to use them. I enjoy seeing how other photographers go about doing things. As I am pretty much self-taught in the modern age (I did go to school for photography before digital), I have found that sometimes I learn a much easier way to do things, but other times I realize I had a pretty good system of my own.

I recently bought a transmitter for my flash, and it is great. I now just leave it on the top of the camera and place the flash wherever I what it. Being able to control it all from the transmitter enables me to reduce or increase the strength of the flash from the camera, and enjoy the benefits of the extra light. It takes time to learn how best to use a flash, and I am certainly not there yet. But I understand now why teachers will say some people promote themselves as ‘natural light photographers’ to avoid learning how to use a flash the right way. As far as I am concerned, you should always be learning. There is so much out there to add to what you can do. I never want to limit myself. Which is probably why I am always learning, and doing, new things. One never wants to be bored! 😊

Hubby’s dog, Miss Molly. I have the youngest standing in front of Molly holding her attention, and the flash.

The youngest dog, Archer. She is also standing in front of him with the flash.

Worldwide Photowalk 2017

Yesterday the youngest and I joined in on the 2017 Worldwide Photowalk. This is a wonderful event that Scott Kelby (of kelbyone.com) is celebrating the 10th anniversary of sponsoring. You can read about it here – http://worldwidephotowalk.com/

The point of the Photowalk is to meet up with fellow photographers at locations all over the world. There were people walking in many countries like New Zealand & Australia, Thailand, the Netherlands, and of course the USA, just to name a few. It is so exciting to read the Facebook page, and see so many people, from all over the world, joining in their mutual passion of photography.

At the end, I found our walk an interesting experience. We went to the Air Force Museum, which was nice and cool inside. But, the environment was very dark. So, note to self – need a tri-pod. I did use the youngest’s shoulder to steady a few shots. But it was definitely a learning experience in low-light shooting. In the end I had some terrific shots, and some that would have been so much better if I had managed my settings a bit better, or even had the ability to do a time-lapsed shot.

Either way, here is a slideshow of my favorites.