June 24, 2018, 09:02:25 PM

Author Topic: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?  (Read 19081 times)

dirtcastle

  • EOS 6D Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 390
    • Eric Nord Flickr Page
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #15 on: September 10, 2012, 11:34:30 PM »
This is popular on red carpets...


CB Mini-RC
http://www.custombrackets.com/cb-mini-rc.html

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #15 on: September 10, 2012, 11:34:30 PM »

drjlo

  • EOS 5DS R
  • ******
  • Posts: 795
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #16 on: September 14, 2012, 07:08:02 PM »

OR... it might be a rig that the photographer came up with himself (that NEVER happens right?!!!?).

Situation is the same - its a flash mounted very close to the lens axis, being half a ring, one rectangle, whatever....

Heh.  For example, I just rigged up this beauty-dishesque reflector to be used with speedlite's wide angle panel deployed, mostly in order to improve on-camera flash. 


SAM_0077a by drjlo1, on Flickr

If space allows, this bracket-mounted real beauty dish, for closer portraits.


SAM_0081A by drjlo1, on Flickr


dlleno

  • EOS 5D Mark IV
  • ******
  • Posts: 605
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #17 on: September 14, 2012, 10:50:01 PM »
I've also struggled with this. I think metering and exposure are critical to getting good shots with on-camera flash. Whenever possible, I think on-camera flash works best when used to fill in shadows and not as the primary light source. The only exception is when you can bounce the light off nearby surfaces and diffuse the light.

With regard to flash toys, I don't think there is a silver bullet. All of the various manipulators seem to have their pluses and minuses. I've used cards, diffusers, bouncers, etc. Like most photographers, I have a flash toy graveyard.



+1 on that. the first thing to go in my graveyard was a particular piece of tupperware that works good as a bare bulb converter.  it is  marketed with true but incomplete information and i now use another more convinient and less expensive solution. 

brianleighty

  • EOS 80D
  • ****
  • Posts: 308
    • Leighty Photography
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #18 on: September 15, 2012, 09:58:44 AM »
I've also struggled with this. I think metering and exposure are critical to getting good shots with on-camera flash. Whenever possible, I think on-camera flash works best when used to fill in shadows and not as the primary light source. The only exception is when you can bounce the light off nearby surfaces and diffuse the light.

With regard to flash toys, I don't think there is a silver bullet. All of the various manipulators seem to have their pluses and minuses. I've used cards, diffusers, bouncers, etc. Like most photographers, I have a flash toy graveyard.



+1 on that. the first thing to go in my graveyard was a particular piece of tupperware that works good as a bare bulb converter.  it is  marketed with true but incomplete information and i now use another more convinient and less expensive solution.

Are you talking about the gary fong for what you got rid of or those really tiny translucent pieces of plastic that you put over the head to diffuse it? What'd you go with?
Canon 5D Mark II, 50D, 24-105L IS, Sigma 35 1.4, Canon 40 2.8 Canon 70-200 f4 L, Canon 70-200 IS II L, Canon 600 EX-RT, 580 EXII, 430 EXII

RLPhoto

  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *********
  • Posts: 3779
  • Gear doesn't matter, Just a Matter of Convenience.
    • My Portfolio
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #19 on: September 15, 2012, 10:18:35 AM »
Ok CR users, I bought a Wing light for my flashes. I liked the idea and will attempt to remember to post here about it when I receive it.

brianleighty

  • EOS 80D
  • ****
  • Posts: 308
    • Leighty Photography
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #20 on: September 15, 2012, 10:48:06 AM »
Ok CR users, I bought a Wing light for my flashes. I liked the idea and will attempt to remember to post here about it when I receive it.
Wow that's pretty expensive for what it seems to be. I'll be interested to see how it works out for you.
Canon 5D Mark II, 50D, 24-105L IS, Sigma 35 1.4, Canon 40 2.8 Canon 70-200 f4 L, Canon 70-200 IS II L, Canon 600 EX-RT, 580 EXII, 430 EXII

RLPhoto

  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *********
  • Posts: 3779
  • Gear doesn't matter, Just a Matter of Convenience.
    • My Portfolio
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #21 on: September 15, 2012, 11:33:32 AM »
Ok CR users, I bought a Wing light for my flashes. I liked the idea and will attempt to remember to post here about it when I receive it.
Wow that's pretty expensive for what it seems to be. I'll be interested to see how it works out for you.

Not much more expensive that the Tupperware, or other diffusers.  :P

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #21 on: September 15, 2012, 11:33:32 AM »

dlleno

  • EOS 5D Mark IV
  • ******
  • Posts: 605
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #22 on: September 15, 2012, 12:19:25 PM »
I've also struggled with this. I think metering and exposure are critical to getting good shots with on-camera flash. Whenever possible, I think on-camera flash works best when used to fill in shadows and not as the primary light source. The only exception is when you can bounce the light off nearby surfaces and diffuse the light.

With regard to flash toys, I don't think there is a silver bullet. All of the various manipulators seem to have their pluses and minuses. I've used cards, diffusers, bouncers, etc. Like most photographers, I have a flash toy graveyard.



+1 on that. the first thing to go in my graveyard was a particular piece of tupperware that works good as a bare bulb converter.  it is  marketed with true but incomplete information and i now use another more convinient and less expensive solution.

Are you talking about the gary fong for what you got rid of or those really tiny translucent pieces of plastic that you put over the head to diffuse it? What'd you go with?

I found that the gf was over marketed and in the situations I was faced with it didnt' provide near the benefit that the videos show, which of course (what they didn't emphasize) had plenty of reflective surfaces and studio like conditions in that regard.  the chief shortcoming is that the device itself does not enlarge the light source which of course diffusers don't do. 

for a bare bulb diffuser I ended up with the stofen omnibounce cause its just a lot more convinient. 

all in all, the folks at lumiquest and strobist are among those that give the straightest and most helpful information so you can taylor your strobe utilization to fit the need. 

jonathan7007

  • EOS 80D
  • ****
  • Posts: 262
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #23 on: September 15, 2012, 01:35:30 PM »
First I have to say I *loved* the pie plate! Did you patent that or can I try it too? Super. Of course, at a wedding I shoot at a high fee I might hesitate, but maybe the crazy scientist persona would carry the day. I really do think it would make good light, and I would add maybe a stofen or something that caused a little light to be coming out sideways into the aluminum. something just 1/2-inch high so no higher than the projection of the pie-plate rim. I will search your flickr stream for examples shot with this.

Anyway....

I agree with the practicality votes here (ring light in the bag at an event doesn't seem workable except for times I have an assistant.) But I bought, cheap, one of these 6x9" (approx) softboxes for my 580EX that has a lower shape to allow the front 580 sensor to see the scene in front of it. Velcro attachment to Velcro pads already glued to neck of the strobe. Folds flat in the bag. Nicer light. Some loss of range, for sure. There is a thicker piece of the diffuser right in the middle to soften the output in the direct line of aim. I was going to hunt for an image but look on eBay or call your local pro store.

Pie plate beauty dish. LOVE IT!

jonathan7007

brianleighty

  • EOS 80D
  • ****
  • Posts: 308
    • Leighty Photography
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #24 on: September 15, 2012, 02:05:13 PM »
First I have to say I *loved* the pie plate! Did you patent that or can I try it too? Super. Of course, at a wedding I shoot at a high fee I might hesitate, but maybe the crazy scientist persona would carry the day. I really do think it would make good light, and I would add maybe a stofen or something that caused a little light to be coming out sideways into the aluminum. something just 1/2-inch high so no higher than the projection of the pie-plate rim. I will search your flickr stream for examples shot with this.

Anyway....

I agree with the practicality votes here (ring light in the bag at an event doesn't seem workable except for times I have an assistant.) But I bought, cheap, one of these 6x9" (approx) softboxes for my 580EX that has a lower shape to allow the front 580 sensor to see the scene in front of it. Velcro attachment to Velcro pads already glued to neck of the strobe. Folds flat in the bag. Nicer light. Some loss of range, for sure. There is a thicker piece of the diffuser right in the middle to soften the output in the direct line of aim. I was going to hunt for an image but look on eBay or call your local pro store.

Pie plate beauty dish. LOVE IT!

jonathan7007

Yeah I just bought one of those small softboxes off ebay for like $2.90 including shipping. Can't beat that. If I don't like it then whatever.

@RLPhoto, I bought my "tupperware" for $30 with free shipping so that's twice the price. I agree the "tupperware" looks weird but that other thing looks even stranger. It looks like it's just paper on the ends. However I would think if you don't have a ceiling to bounce off that would work better than the tupperware. As I said I just bought an on camera softbox. We'll see how well that works for situations where there's no wall to bounce off of.
Canon 5D Mark II, 50D, 24-105L IS, Sigma 35 1.4, Canon 40 2.8 Canon 70-200 f4 L, Canon 70-200 IS II L, Canon 600 EX-RT, 580 EXII, 430 EXII

dlleno

  • EOS 5D Mark IV
  • ******
  • Posts: 605
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #25 on: September 15, 2012, 05:13:40 PM »
the thing about light toys and graveyards is that you must first understand both your needs and the nature of light beore you select the tool.  light travels in straight lines so no amount of diffusion will soften the light coming from the strobe itself. a controlled  combination of direct vs reflective light is better accomplished with a bounce or partial bounce device insread of tupoerware imho. 

jonathan7007

  • EOS 80D
  • ****
  • Posts: 262
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #26 on: September 15, 2012, 10:59:27 PM »
Sure, I have the same graveyard! But the genius of a pie plate is that it doesn't go into the graveyard.

It goes into the Recycle Bin.

I am so trying this. Genius. Someone invite me to a party where the guests have a sense of humor. I do believe the pictures will come out well because at the right party people will be smiling at the rig they are facing.

This may come off like sarcasm but it's not.

jonathan7007

DianeK

  • EOS M5
  • ****
  • Posts: 161
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #27 on: September 15, 2012, 11:49:10 PM »
I am so trying this. Genius. Someone invite me to a party where the guests have a sense of humor. I do believe the pictures will come out well because at the right party people will be smiling at the rig they are facing.
jonathan7007

I've got to try this too...it's one of those "why didn't I think of that?" head-slaps.
Diane

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #27 on: September 15, 2012, 11:49:10 PM »

Viggo

  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *********
  • Posts: 3186
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #28 on: September 16, 2012, 04:36:13 AM »
Has someone even mentioned GELS here? I find that color balance often is the giveaway when using direct flash. You can get away with flat light and harsh shadows more than a dark yellow background. And as pointed out by others, balancing your flash with ambient is key. Have the same light and same focal for a subject shot with flash with background 2 stops under and then two stops over makes for two VERY different pictures.
1dx mkII, 35 L II, Zeiss 50 f2 mp, 85 L IS, Broncolor Siros 800 L.

brianleighty

  • EOS 80D
  • ****
  • Posts: 308
    • Leighty Photography
Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #29 on: September 16, 2012, 08:53:40 AM »
the thing about light toys and graveyards is that you must first understand both your needs and the nature of light beore you select the tool.  light travels in straight lines so no amount of diffusion will soften the light coming from the strobe itself. a controlled  combination of direct vs reflective light is better accomplished with a bounce or partial bounce device insread of tupoerware imho.
And what is a bounce device? Obviously ceilings and walls are your best bounce devices as they'll always be bigger than what you can get on a camera. In which case the tupperware works pretty. Don't get me wrong it's far from perfect and I'm always looking for alternatives but it's the best I've found so far. One thing I will say is that I've tested just shooting the straight flash up into a ceiling vs with the tupperware and I liked the look of the tupperware better. But one advantage of shooting directly off the ceiling is the balance in light level between near objects and far objects is improved somewhat since less light is being directed straight forward. For this reason I'm looking at trying out this technique some more.
Canon 5D Mark II, 50D, 24-105L IS, Sigma 35 1.4, Canon 40 2.8 Canon 70-200 f4 L, Canon 70-200 IS II L, Canon 600 EX-RT, 580 EXII, 430 EXII

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Direct Flash - How to make it useful?
« Reply #29 on: September 16, 2012, 08:53:40 AM »