Photography NCFE Level 1 Class 10, Flash Photography
I thought we had covered most of the difficult things for beginners, but I was wrong, I had missed out the flash!
I confess I am not entirely sure whether I have mastered this or indeed some of the other techniques yet, nor really understand the flash aspect fully but I will share with you what I wrote down during class.
First of all we went through everybodys posts, and one student had borrowed a bridge camera and set it to multiple exposure and created some lovely effects. When she took a shot it would allow her to reposition and choose when to take another to layer over which I thought sounded great fun. It turns out with our DSLR’s that it doesn’t work in quite the same way and that you can in fact create with more ease perhaps the same effect using photoshop, he showed us a few examples of which when time I will try out.
When to use flash photography?
- During bright sunny days you use a flash to lighten the shadows. It you don’t want the sun blaring in to someone’s face, you want a relaxed expression, so put them in the shade then use the flash to brighten up the portrait. I personally would never have thought of this. So in effect anywhere where you need to brighten up shadows or create effects I suppose, it is useful – This is apparently called ‘Fill In Flash Photography’.
- You can also use the flash to freeze the subject with a long exposure to get a sharper subject, though I have not done this yet.
- On a dull day put the flash on to saturate the colour.
- when using a slow shutter speed and multiple exposures.
- macro photography
Just one example of macro/flash photography set up.
How To Find The Flash (on my camera, might slightly differ on others)
First of all if you set the camera to auto in the settings it will always pop up the flash as it is trying to optimise the photography capture assuming you don’t know what you are doing. It will also raise the ISO.
In our instance however we are using the manual setting and this is the best setting for using the flash as you cannot control the other aspects of the camera settings without it being this way.
The flash button is on the left hand side, like a lightning symbol.
We were asked to take a photograph and set the camera to the best settings with light exposure etc.
With the inbuilt flash we then popped it on. It went from a shutter speed of 1/4000 to 1/200 as this is the fastest s/s with an inbuilt flash on my camera that you can get. If the s/s is too fast then the blades are too close together when taking the shot and it is almost like the old fashioned cinema looking shot that you end up with having a dark stripe at the top and or bottom of the photograph. You can see someone elses example below…
If you get an external flash it auto syncs with the camera to avoid this, there is not limit. This is why most photographers use a separate flash rather than the inbuilt one. I have now bought a flash, however yet to use or understand how to use it. It will remain back in it’s box until class!
So we kept the settings and popped up the flash. You can then adjust through the menu on the flash setting which again looks like a lightning flash a + or – setting and I guess it just takes practice to know what you are doing. You will find that when it is right, it highlights the face quite softly bringing it to the forefront of the photograph, nice and clear.
When you change the zoom with the flash photography the shape of the flash changes to adjust to the wide angle or telescopic shape.
You can guess really what it was to do?
So I didn’t use my external flash for my photography as simply had had no time to work out how to use it so relied on my good old fashioned inbuilt one. I also ‘attempted’ some more panning which from a panning point of view was a COMPLETE DISASER, however the photographs turned out oddly interesting, the subject matter, my youngest said “those are cool mummy” when he saw them so I thought I would share my mistakes also!
HOMEWORK WAS A DISASTER, ack feeling somewhat dispondent as looking through all my photographs I see no difference whatsoever when altering the flash, do you?
Also I have no way of telling that I have found so far from the photograph information what the flash was set to, another question for class.
So I abducted a friend’s husband who kindly and patiently waited for me whilst I fiddled with my settings. Taking a photograph without a flash, then putting the flash on and altering to a + and -. I cannot really see any difference, can you?
So then I abducted some children, even less visual results!
Then I abducted a female adult! Can’t see the difference, can you?
I then got two adults together, see a difference?
I nearly gave up at this point, the children subdued agreed to pose again…I generally went to + then down, but still cannot see the changes
Then I gave up and decided to share some of my non panning photographs 🙂
So my youngest was skateboarding and I got the poor thing to go backwards and forwards in the car park about 10 times to no avail though!