Nikon Know-how

You don’t have to use a flash on-cam­era. Rod Law­ton ex­plains the po­ten­tial of off-cam­era flash

NPhoto - - Contents -

Off-cam­era flash can do great things for your pho­tos, so find out how it works and what your model of Nikon is ca­pa­ble of

The first ex­pe­ri­ence most of us have of flash is when the tiny flash unit built into the

cam­era fires in dim con­di­tions. You get the pic­ture, but the light is harsh and has a strictly limited range.

This gives flash a bad rep­u­ta­tion, but it’s ac­tu­ally an ex­tremely use­ful light­ing aid. It truly comes into its own when you use if off-cam­era, us­ing ex­ter­nal Nikon Speed­lights or third-party flash units. You can also use your Nikon D-SLR with stu­dio

Light di­rec­tion

light­ing sys­tems, which of­fer much more power and ver­sa­til­ity and open up a whole world of cre­ative light­ing. The di­rec­tion of the light is all-im­por­tant. You may not no­tice it much on an over­cast day, but on a sunny one it’s easy to see how the an­gle of the sun can pro­duce a range of tex­tures and shadow ef­fects in your sub­ject. You see the same ef­fects if you use a flash off-cam­era, mov­ing it around so that the light hits your sub­ject at dif­fer­ent an­gles.

The ‘qual­ity’ of the light makes a big dif­fer­ence too. The sun is a small, hard light source that pro­duces strong con­trast and hard shad­ows – and a naked flash­gun will pro­duce a very sim­i­lar ef­fect. An over­cast sky pro­duces a more even light. You will get a sim­i­lar re­sult if you ‘bounce’ the light from a flash­gun off a wall.

Stu­dio light­ing en­ables you to con­trol the di­rec­tion and the qual­ity of the light, us­ing light­ing stands and flash mod­i­fiers to achieve ef­fects that nat­u­ral light alone can’t cre­ate.

Flash out­doors

Most stu­dio sys­tems are de­signed to be used in­doors and pow­ered by the mains, but there’s an in­creas­ing num­ber of out­door bat­tery-pow­ered flash sys­tems that use wire­less trig­ger­ing tech­nol­ogy to al­low you to aug­ment nat­u­ral day­light with con­trol­lable ar­ti­fi­cial il­lu­mi­na­tion.

nikon know-how

Off-cam­era flash opens up whole new op­por­tu­ni­ties for pho­tog­ra­phy

and cre­ative light­ing con­trol

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.