Friday, December 17, 2010

12 Days of Better Christmas Photography - Day 5 - better photos shooting indoors

You have a couple options:

1. No flash:

When you can, turn off your flash and turn on lights or shoot near a window and use the natural light. Natural light is ideal for photography you will have truer colors and the light will be softer. Do not face toward the window yourself or you'll end up with a silhouette. Instead, you need to be somewhere between your subject, and the window.

Without flash, you might have to embrace the yellow cast of incandescent lights, and/or a little blur until you get better at photography (there are ways to compensate that we will talk about later!) In a way, I kind of like that yellow cast that you get from regular raw light bulbs, I think it gives a warm feeling to some photos.

Don't forget, that even on some point and shoots, you can raise your ISO to make the camera more sensitive to light. The higher the number the more sensitive it is. However, often the higher the number, the more grain/loss of quality the image has, so there is a fine balance. You can pull beautiful photos at a much lower light so read your manual and figure out how to change your ISO.


Tanner opening gifts.
Left: Natural light coming from the window facing north (it's a blue light)
Right: Incandescent light from a lamp (it's a yellow light)
I just embraced it and left it as is.

2. Flash:

The flash can be a real lifesaver, no doubt about it. The artificial light can mean the difference between a pretty good photo and a trash can photo. However, most light from flash units, in particular those on point and shoots, causes harsh flat light.

If you have a DSLR with an external flash unit, your best option is to bounce the light off of a wall or the ceiling. Practice! If you can't bounce your flash (or you have no external), you can diffuse the light coming out of your flash by making a diffuser out of a piece of tissue or a napkin. It really does work! This will cause the light to spread, instead of going straight at your subject and your shadows will be much softer.

Don't Forget:
Don't just let your other lessons we've learned go willy nilly indoors. Remember to crop in camera and watch your backgrounds!

Saturday's lesson will probably come Sunday morning! I have a wedding - I doubt she'd like me blogging instead of shooting! BRIDES today! I swear. ;)

1 comment:

Toyin O. said...

Very informative, thanks for sharing.

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