1.18.2011

Improve Flash Photography With Diffusers

Today's post is definitely something that works for me, and I want to share with my web friends! I want to talk a but about flash photography and how diffusers can improve the color and light in your photos exponentially! I guess the first question might be. WHY shoot with flash at all? Well, considering that photographs are created with LIGHT, cameras NEED light to create images, and when light is low, an on-camera or external flash can be the difference between getting a shot, or not getting one at all. However,  sometimes the solution--in this case, the flash--creates a new set of problems.
Ewwwwwww...... right?

Imagine a flash is like a car's headlight, shining directly onto your subject. That kind of light can be harsh, unflattering, overpowering, and unnatural, adding hard shadows to subjects that don't need them. In the case of portraits, flash often blows out some details, reveals little blemishes and lines, and creates nasty shadows into some images. Sounds loverly, right? So, how to fix this, when NOT using a flash is NOT an option? A diffuser.
You need more diffused light, like the kind you see outside on a cloudy day. But how do you soften light from a flash? There are many options, and I'm going to share a few ideas with you. Hopefully you'll find one that works best for you!

Okay, first - this is what I use:
I am a HUGE Gary Fong fan. He knows what he's talking about, and he makes gorgeous light not only possible, but AFFORDABLE. I love the way his diffusers really soften and spread out the light nicely. I love using his diffuser not only indoors, but also outside on sunny days to fill in those harsh shadows, or in shady places to give the images some warmth. Love it!

You can be sure I was flipping out when I say THIS:
It's a diffuser for  your pop-up flash! NICE! I love this idea. Who wants to carry around their enormous flash for everyday shooting? This simple device softens the pop up flash light, which is some of the harshest light I've come across. Yay Gary!!

Don't want to spend the $$ on a diffuser? No worries, there are a TON of ideas for creating your own diffusers from household items. They work great, too! Here are just a few that I found:









You can stick a white baby sock over your point and shoot flash, too, to soften that! There are so many ways to diffuse the light from camera flashes, and it will make all the difference. And it doesn't need to cost you much...if anything!

Okay, I want to know WHO is going to try this, and I want to see what results you get! If you want to share, click below and let's see your photos! Happy shooting!



Photobucket

6 comments:

Frolicking Night Owl said...

I have the Gary Fong Pop-Up flash diffuser. I def need to get it out & use it more!! But it was super cheap. I wanna say $20 or less @ Ritz.

denise said...

Thank you so much for the tips! I have tried a few things before, but none of the ones you have mentioned. Can't wait to try it out.

Amy said...

The one you use looks awesome. I may have to buy it now.

I actually made one out of a milk jug. And it works...just a pain to keep on. So I've been wanting a new one!

Melissa said...

Love this post. Thank you for the info - I am buying a difuser today. :)

Mary said...

I *need* a flash difuser and will be getting one ASAP. You have no idea how much help you have been to me. Again,I am only an ameture photographer but Your tips have helped me to get much better photos. Thank you Bobbi.

Mary

angelauden said...

Thanks so much for the tips. I'm going to try one of these.