Controlling the Direction of Light - Tutorial by David L. Tong If you’re new to


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theveed

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#1
by David L. Tong

If you’re new to flash, please read my previous flash-related articles here, here, and here, before proceeding to simplify your learning process.


Image Courtesy of Amazon.com


Before we begin, this article will only benefit users of external flash guns that will allow you to tilt, swivel, and rotate your flash head such as a Canon 580EX II (illustrated), or practitioners of off-cam flash triggers.



A dedicated flash unit emits more light than a standard built-in flash, enabling you to light up wider and farther distances as well. In addition, most higher-end models allow you to change the angle of the flash head, allowing you to control where the light will travel and reflect from.


This, I believe, is one of the most important selling points of an external flash gun.


While the ability to throw more light to a subject is great, using a dedicated flash for direct lighting only is, in my opinion, under-utilizing an advance piece of equipment.


An external flash will have some disadvantages such as size, the need to carry another piece of equipment, the need to carry more batteries, etc. The advantages, however, outweigh the negatives, especially if you shoot indoors. The ability of external flash to provide more light, directional light, faster auto-focus assistance, strobe effects, and saving your camera’s battery consumption are much more important features you gain than the mere size/weight issue, if you’re always concerned about creating your own light.


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calebk

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#5
Unless the wall has multiple colors, the color cast isn't as big of an issue if you match the flash's light color temp with the ambient.

If the walls are casting an orangy cast, use a CTO, if it's a green cast, use a green gel, etc. So that the WHOLE image looks the same, even if color is off, then you can adjust wb in PP in one go as the whole image has the same color cast.
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Refer to my Color Gel article as well :) http://reviews.davidleetong.com/?p=166
Am I missing something?

For instance, if the wall gives a green cast already, bouncing the flash will already give you a green cast, so what contribution would adding an additional CTG on your flash give?

IIRC, you will need to match the flash to ambient light, but still be bouncing off a neutral surface to get no colour cast. For instance, in a tungsten lit environment, you'd want a CTO on your flash head, bouncing off a white wall, to match ambient light's colour temperature.
 

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theveed

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#6
My reply was hastily posted, my apologies, I misunderstood ssping's question... :shame: rushing to go to bed hehe.

If you're bouncing off a strong colored wall, then there's really not much you can do but to balance the color out in post processing.

Thanks for the correction, calebk...
 

flipfreak

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#7
My reply was hastily posted, my apologies, I misunderstood ssping's question... :shame: rushing to go to bed hehe.

If you're bouncing off a strong colored wall, then there's really not much you can do but to balance the color out in post processing.

Thanks for the correction, calebk...
not really. u can always put in the opposing color and the 2 tones will cancel each other out. but thats provided u know what color will the cast be in the first place. :bsmilie:
 

#9
not really. u can always put in the opposing color and the 2 tones will cancel each other out. but thats provided u know what color will the cast be in the first place. :bsmilie:
hi flipfreak.. do you mean gelling the strobe to "cancel" the effects of the coloured wall? won't that require like MANY colours when dealing with different situations?
 

calebk

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Jul 25, 2006
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Clementi
#10
hi flipfreak.. do you mean gelling the strobe to "cancel" the effects of the coloured wall? won't that require like MANY colours when dealing with different situations?
Yes, tons of them. :D
 

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