Home Studio Photography with canon slave flashes

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New Member
Sep 9, 2003

I've just wondering whether anyone has sufficient "best practice info" on using canon slave flashes (550ex x 2, 580ex, ST-E2) for portrait photography.

I'm looking into

placement of flashes.
flash intensity/settings (eg: ratio, FEC on slave flashes)
use of bounces.

I've tried doing it myself and I always have to contend with long shadows or light shadows behind the subject... and I've not been able to successfully eliminate those.


Senior Member
Jul 27, 2003
East Side
Did you try bouncing the 550ex off an umbrella, or thru a diffuser umbrella?

Before I got my light stands, I used the Bogen superclamp (the one with a umbrella hole) to hold one 550ex and the umbrella for the rembrant setup. I taped a piece of rolled white A4 paper infront of other 550ex placed behind the subject.

Play around with the ratio; A for the umbrella 550ex, and B for the backlight. 2:1 work for me, but YMMV.

There were more experiments, but forgot to write them down!

I use 2 550ex and a ST-E2 then.

BTW, do you know the rolled A4 paper horizontally taped over a 550ex (and pointing up) attached on the camera shooting small jewellery pieces gives wonderfully diffused light. If you play with the + and - ambient compensation giveing you control over the background exposure. Furthermore, the reflection of the shiny surfaces looks good too. Works for me! Again YMMV.

Happy New Year.

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