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Photography Short Course – Flash Photography 2

Flash Photography

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Flash Photography

This was our second introduction to using Flash Photography on the Photography Short Course and follows on directly from where we left off from the previous weeks Balloon bursting.Water Balloon

A large fish tank filled with water standing on a table in front of a dark cloth background. A stand alone flash unit with a wireless trigger was positioned above and to the right of the balloon with the camera mounted on a tripod also positioned directly facing the tank. We held something in the water where we hoped the object would enter the water to pre focus, which meant all we needed to do was click the trigger.

The idea this time was to trigger the shutter just as an object was dropped into the fish tank. There was also a large glass vase filled with water and using a side flash, with a black or white card background to photograph objects agaisnt but unfortunately time did not permit me the opportunity to try this setup.

The pictures above show the result of those I caught as they dropped into the fish tank however there are many more pictures of empty tanks (triggered before entry) and tanks with the items laying at the bottom of the tank (Flash triggered late). What I learned from this simple exercise is timing and of course typical settings for using Flash to capture moving objects – to freeze a moment in time.

We repeated this experiment using a smaller fish tank but this time using a hand held Flash connected using a hot shoe adapter, connecting to the flash using a cable.

I’ve limited the editing to cropping and adding a tint using Lightroom 4, which can be downloaded as a 30 day trial version from Adobes website.

Camera Settings – Canon EOS 60D

None of these settings are set in stone but these seemed to give the best results.

  • Camera set to Manual
  • White Balance set to Flash
  • Shutter Speed 1/125 to 1/250 (depending on which flash gun was used)
  • Aperture set between F8 to F11

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Photography Short Course – Using the Flash

Photography Short Course
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This was our first introduction to using Flash on the Photography Short Course.

Balloons filled with water were suspended against a dark cloth background. A stand alone flash unit with a wireless trigger was positioned above and to the right of the balloon with the camera mounted on a tripod also positioned slightly to the right.

By using a dart the idea was to trigger the shutter just as a thrown dart bursts the Balloon.Water Balloon burst with a dart

The pictures above show the result of those I caught as they burst however there are many more pictures of intact Balloons and darts yet to touch the Balloon. What I learned from this simple exercise is timing and of course typical settings for using Flash to capture moving objects – to freeze a moment in time.

I also found out how good the basic Flash fitted to the Canon is at doing something like this – some of those pictures are taken using the cameras flash and some using an external flash unit costing £100’s – can you tell which is which?

I’ve limited the editing to cropping only using Lightroom 4, which can be downloaded as a 30 day trial version from Adobes website.

Camera Settings – Canon EOS 60D

None of these settings are set in stone but these seemed to give the best results.

  • Camera set to Manual
  • White Balance set to Flash
  • Shutter Speed 1/200
  • Aperture set between F8 to F11
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