Putting it all together for proper exposure



Using Fill Flash on a close subject.

I arrive at an area that I want to photograph. When I left my home, the light was perfect, slightly overcast with clear areas allowing nicely defined shadows.

When I got there, the overcast sky turned into a sunny harsh day, with harsh contrasty shadows and blown out high lights…. Yuck…..

I now need to change my strategy, I’m glad I brought my flash with me. Yes, on a harsh bright day, a flash can actually lessen the Suns effect. (as long as I am not photographing wide landscape vistas).

I find an area that I want to photograph, a small grouping of spring flowers that just bloomed. The harsh shadows are just killing the detail in the pedals. This is where the flash come in to play. I mount the flash and make sure it is on TTL mode. I will set exposure meter on “Center Weighted”, since I am close to my subject.

Most, if not all cameras that offer TTL flash control will automatically work as a “Fill” light, and open up the shadows and show more detail.

Now, as I am looking at the preview, I noticed that the exposures to light. This happens when the lens may have a wider f/stop, thus allowing more ambient light in than is needed when combined with the flash. The 1st corrective action to try is to change the f/stop to a smaller f/stop (larger number). And see how it works.

If it is still to bright, try an even smaller f/stop. If you get to the place where you have no more f/stops, you will use “Flash Exposure Compensation” — FEC — (typically on your flash options).  Try “-1/3 and see how it works.. Keep going on the (-) side until you get a nice exposure. If you can’t get a nice exposure, move back a few feet, and try again.