Friday, October 03, 2014


My photography class is currently working on using flash in order to simulate natural light. In every other topic that we've covered, I've been way on board. Manual setting? Awesome! Night photography? Sweet! Action photography? Bonus!

So far, in flash class, I'm all...Meh. So. Stinking. Frustrating. We had a field trip with models this week, and I got a couple of nice photographs, but most of them just screamed "FLASH" at me. I'm doing the things - I'm making the adjustments - I understand the physics. I just can't seem to get a photo that makes my heart sing.

Yesterday, I borrowed Joshua for a quick session in the garage to see if I could improve any. First, I took a photo of him just using the light that was coming in through the garage door. Why does my garage have such lovely light? Honestly - in the mornings, it's just a gorgeous place to photograph people. I need to install some curtains to hide all the bikes and junk so it could be an official photography studio. This is what I ended up with...


See what I mean? Gorgeous light. It's soft and even. It fills in his eye sockets and lights up those aqua eyes perfectly. I love the reflection of the sky in his eyes. I love how it evens out his skin tone and makes his freckles completely adorable. I love this photo.

Happy Dance.

Now - flash forward (see what I did there) a few minutes. I had the flash angled away and bouncing off a card, hoping that would soften its effects. I had it turned way down and barely even flashing. I changed a few settings on the camera to lessen the impact. and still...



Ugh. I hate what it does to his eyes - that little pinprick of light just off-center in the pupil. The light is harsh and unforgiving. I don't like the fact that the inside of his nostrils are illuminated. (Is that a weird thing to notice?) In short - I don't like it one little bit.

I really don't understand why I'm struggling so much with it. It may be a mental block, because I used flash so much in the past, in all the wrong ways, and now I can't wrap my head around the fact that it can be lovely and, at times, necessary.

All I can do is press on. Keep practicing. Not give up. I WILL figure this out.

And I'll let you know when I do...