Blue Ice by Tonia @The Gunny Sack
February 14, 2011 at 8:59 am with heavy fog
If you are like me, you don’t have the money to create an in home photography studio complete with professional lighting. There are several easy ways to add light to your pictures. The ones I will talk about today can be done without manually changing your camera’s settings.
You can also try putting a diffuser over your camera’s flash. You can buy a diffuser specifically for this purpose or tape a small piece of translucent material, such as white tissue paper, over the flash.
A couple of weeks ago, I showed you the external flash (also called a “hot shoe” flash unit) I use by mounting it to my camera. It can swivel and tilt so that I can bounce the light off the ceiling or a wall. My Nikon Speedlight can also be used as a remote flash (not mounted on the camera ~ you can put it anyplace) with a remote cord accessory, which I do not own.
You can also add light with a…well…light! I’ve used my family room lamps, desk lamps and floor lamps. The light can be shown directly at the subject if far enough back and a diffuser can be placed in front of the lamp. If you are taking pictures by yourself this can get really tricky and it helps to have a tripod. With a tripod, you can set your camera on self timer and then hold the diffuser (or reflector) while the camera takes the picture.
Lamps can also be directed at a reflector (or piece of white tag board) and the light will be reflected at the subject. This is great for adding light to one side of the subject and can be used in conjunction with a light source that is directed toward the subject. You want to make sure the reflector is close enough to the subject and the light fills the reflector. This isn’t the best picture of how to do it but I was trying to take it with one hand while holding the reflector. Just play around with it until you get the light the way you want it.
You can also make or buy a light box. A light box is basically a large cube of translucent material that is open at one end. Several years ago my husband made one for us but we never really used it so we ended up getting rid of it. With a light box, you shine lights on the outside of the box and since the material is translucent the light is diffused on the subject in the box.