Techniques & Processes: Flash shoots

28th April 2014

I wanted to test my flash again and use the knowledge I had learnt about Guide numbers, to shoot my Mum and Dad.

I used my mind to work out what the aperture would be in regards to how far away I was to the subjects. My flash batteries were running out so in my contact sheet there are some silhouettes because of the slow reaction of the flash not going off. I set my lens length at 50mm and adjusted my flash to match. I shot them in front of a window because I wanted to see the results a ‘fill in flash’ would create, so that the subject and the background are both lit and visible. Here are my results:

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1/64 sec, f8, ISO 200, 50mm lens length. Here I had the flash pointed up at the white ceiling, I was 5ft away from the subjects. I think I could have even gone down to f5.6 because it appears slightly under exposed.

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1/64 sec, f22, ISO 200, 50mm lens length. Here I had the flash pointing directly at the subjects, so worked out the aperture to be 16.6 which is effectively f22.

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Both images are: 1/64 sec, f8, ISO 200, 50mm lens length. 5ft Away from the subjects. This time I bounced the flash off of the scenery either side of the subjects. The left image has come out dark and orange because The flash was bounced off of a magnolia wallpapered wall on the subjects right hand side. It is darker because the wall is further away than the ceiling, so I should have stopped down to f5.6 or even f4. In the right image I bounced  the flash off of a kitchen cabinet to the left of the subjects. This was closer and so the flash is brighter – even though both images were take on the same settings.

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1/64 sec, f8, ISO 200 (except the close up which is ISO 100), 50mm lens length. Variety of distances. I should have adjusted the aperture rather than the ISO and worked it out properly with my guide number which is 83 for my Speed Lite.
Different distances. Notice how the light on the subjects is more contrasted and the shadows are deeper the closer I am to them?

I have learnt a lot from this test and want to shoot again however with the understanding I have gained from re-testing my flash. I will also shoot towards my proposal, using flash.

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1st May 2014 – Jess & Abi (sisters, twins)

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Some of these are a bit too bright, I think it was because of the angle of the flash and the ceiling wasn’t very high. However I should have calculated for that in the moment.

3rd May 2014 – Anca & Matt (married)

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My batteries in my flash gun were running low on these last 2 shoots, so there was a while to wait between being able to take each picture. This actually aided me in my thinking because it gave me a chance to properly calculate distance and aperture, whilst I was waiting. I really like these images and feel they were successful, because I didn’t just snap lots, but really put thought into the flash on each shot.

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