Let it glow
Balance the light from a favourite light-up toy, model or even a glowing musical instrument with the light from a flash, for perfect exposures
When something’s too dark, simply pop a trusty flashgun on your Nikon and it becomes well-exposed, right? Well, not always. We hope that the series so far has helped you to feel pretty confident about getting good exposures with your flashgun, which you can use in many instances. But if you’re shooting an object with its own light source, there’s a little more to think about than usual.
When photographing subjects that light up themselves, it can be easy to run into all sorts of problems. One of the pitfalls you need to avoid is destroying the light of the subject in favour of brightly exposing the image with flash light. Here we’ll show you how you can balance the ambience and the interest of
One of the pitfalls you need to avoid is destroying the light of the subject
the subject that’s lit up with the power of the flash light, for a brilliantly exposed photograph.
We went to the Odeon cinema in Weston-super-Mare to shoot the original, and still functioning, 1930s Compton theatre pipe organ. The organ is enveloped in cascading, colour-changing lights that look beautiful to the naked eye but make it difficult to balance the exposure of the flash and ambient light.
If you can’t get to Weston, you can apply this technique to any subject you’re photographing that lights up, including toys, models and lighting fixtures. Let’s see what we need to do…
Teach Yourself Flash Part 10