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02-28-2009, 04:29 AM   #1
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Fill Flash

I would like to start using outdoor fill flash. I'm using a Metz 58 AF-1 on my K10D, but the flash manual isn't particularly, er, enlightening.

Can anyone give me some start-up tips, or point to tutorials regarding settings, etc?

Thanks for any advice! Paul.

02-28-2009, 06:40 AM   #2
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Hi Paul,

Have a look on Planet Neil blog and you will learn the lots of flash photography.

http://www.planetneil.com/tangents/flash-photography-techniques/

I am also learning flashes, but really enjoy it as you can control the lighting and contrast!!

Anyway, are you talking about outdoor daytime or night fill flash??
02-28-2009, 07:22 AM   #3
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There's lots of info on the web. Here's only one example:
Bit by Bit: A Digital Fill-Flash Technique for Improving Images | CreativePro.com
02-28-2009, 07:30 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by zenkinsw Quote
Hi Paul,

Have a look on Planet Neil blog and you will learn the lots of flash photography.

http://www.planetneil.com/tangents/flash-photography-techniques/

I am also learning flashes, but really enjoy it as you can control the lighting and contrast!!

Anyway, are you talking about outdoor daytime or night fill flash??
I agree, this is a great site. And a google search on the subject will provide many more.

Basically for daytime, outdoor fill flash the flash is balanced with the ambient light. So a simplified technique would be to take a meter reading and adjust the flash to match the resulting exposure settings.
I've actually been toying with using the pop up flash of my K200D with a diffuser for fill. It actually works pretty well for subjects @2-3M distance. Flash output on the K200D is adjustable in 1/2 or 1/3 stop increments for up to -2 stops compensation which has produced acceptable results. With on or off camera flash I use manual mode and simply adjust the flash output.

hth

02-28-2009, 06:37 PM   #5
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I have the metz 58 and it works great as fill outdoors in pttl high speed sync mode. Mayve set a -1 or -2 ev comp so that you don't blow any highlights out but you can adjust as necessary.
02-28-2009, 08:21 PM   #6
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I've mostly stopped using fill flash and use a reflector instead. It's a more natural light and I think it just looks better. Of course when I can't use it I turn to fill flash.
02-28-2009, 10:05 PM   #7
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Strobist.com, plust there's a Pentax Strobist group on Flickr. Both can give you all you want to know about using flash.
03-01-2009, 01:38 AM   #8
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OK Guys, thanks for the tips. I'm pretty much OK with flash in general, but I guess the main issue was using P-TTL for fill. I think that HSS with some -ve comp may be what I was looking for.

Thanks again! Paul

03-01-2009, 03:38 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Paul Hunt Quote
OK Guys, thanks for the tips. I'm pretty much OK with flash in general, but I guess the main issue was using P-TTL for fill. I think that HSS with some -ve comp may be what I was looking for.

Thanks again! Paul
Hi Paul,

I found Flash -/+ve comp behave the same as exposure comp for Pentax, another method could be using M mode and read the meter about -1ve to -2ve stop down from the middle then take the shot.

Using M mode could correct the flash exposure by yourself without worry about tweaking the dial behind your flash, as you look on the meter from view finder and simply dial down/up shutter or Aperture as you wish.

You might want to play with color gel to get warmer color lighting with direct flash, as most of the flash light too cool compare to daylight.
03-01-2009, 06:53 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Paul Hunt Quote
OK Guys, thanks for the tips. I'm pretty much OK with flash in general, but I guess the main issue was using P-TTL for fill. I think that HSS with some -ve comp may be what I was looking for.

Thanks again! Paul
It might be even easier than that! I was asked by a God-daughter to photograph her wedding a while ago. I was worried about too much sun and strong shadows since it was a beach wedding. I had to relearn how to use a reflector (which I didn't use at all) and a bit about fill flash that I was never really good at. I had a K10D and bought a 360fgz flash (I knew the onboard flash would not suffice). I did a lot of reading about fill flash techniques and decided to stay simple. For every shot that counted, I had the flash mounted on a flip bracket with a wired connection. The flash was on P-TTL and the camera was on Program (yes, point and shoot mode but not the Green Auto mode). It worked fine. See the Webshots link and check out B&B Wedding albums. The only shots that had no flash were the tourist shots. Starting with the Wedding Day, the flash was on as described.
Brian

briantimmins's photos and albums on webshots
03-03-2009, 06:35 AM   #11
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Quick and dirty outdoor fill flash tutorial -
Basically, if your subject is in shade and the background is bright (ie under a tree) or majorly backlit, fill flash is your friend. Think of those times when you got a properly exposed background, but the subject was almost pitch black.

Put camera into Av mode, metering will set the shutter speed to expose the overall shot (which in the situations that call for fill-flash will generally be the background) based on your selected aperture/ISO.
Make sure flash is set to HSS (in case your shutter speed go faster than 1/180s) and P-TTL. Fire away! The shutter speed/f-stop/ISO will expose the background, and the flash should output enough power to light up the foreground.

Now to control the background exposure, you use exposure compensation on the camera body (which would adjust the shutter speed), to adjust how much fill for the flash exposure, you use Flash exposure compensation. The trick is balancing the two (as it is with indoor work), and that comes with experience/experimentation.
03-04-2009, 08:12 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by graphicgr8s Quote
I've mostly stopped using fill flash and use a reflector instead. It's a more natural light and I think it just looks better. Of course when I can't use it I turn to fill flash.
I love using reflectors outdoors. I just need to be careful not to blind my subjects.
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