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04-10-2008, 02:39 PM   #1
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Have I developed a bad habit?

For what ever reason I cannot explain I seem to have flash phobia & avoid using the flash at all costs. No matter what photo I'm composing if it looks like crap I'll continue to fiddle with any/all other parameters & don't even entertain the thought of using the flash. Now maybe I haven't gotten myself into a situation where I am absolutely forced to use the flash or risk not taking the shot at all. But so far I tell ya I just don't like to use it. Hell, I think I've only ever used it once or twice on the first day I bought my camera.

What gives?

04-10-2008, 02:44 PM   #2
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I'm an "available light" shooter myself. What that really means is that I just don't know how to properly use a flash.

I need to spend more time at this place.
04-10-2008, 02:51 PM   #3
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I'm with you Arthur, I try not to use a flash at all, I'll crank up the ISO and clean it up later to get the shot. Oddly enough I have a AF540 and two AF360's but I only use that for macros and product shots when i get bored late at night.
04-10-2008, 02:52 PM   #4
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I like the Strobist way for experimentation and fun (might have to do some tonight since it's been raining all day).

Available light just...captures the environment, to me that is. Your mileage will, of course, vary

04-10-2008, 03:13 PM   #5
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Well on camera, built in flash typically looks terrible. Full on deer in headlights portraits. Off camera or bounce can be alot better, but I'm with on a avoiding flash where I can.
04-11-2008, 01:22 AM   #6
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I don't like flash either. I had the AF-360FGZ but sold it again because I didn't really use it.

Occasionally, I use the built-in flash to brighten up a dark scene. I set the flash power to minimum and keep high ISO and wide aperture, so there is still lots of "natural" light and the flash only brightens it up a little.
04-11-2008, 01:23 AM   #7
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I hate the flash to the point I'd shot my own wedding in available light.
How about creating an "I'd rather push my K10d to iso 3200 at 1/4 exposure than use a flash" club? If flash artists have their strobist club why shouldn't we have our own?
((just kidding, but it would be something ))
04-11-2008, 02:21 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by arthur pappas Quote
For what ever reason I cannot explain I seem to have flash phobia & avoid using the flash at all costs. No matter what photo I'm composing if it looks like crap I'll continue to fiddle with any/all other parameters & don't even entertain the thought of using the flash. Now maybe I haven't gotten myself into a situation where I am absolutely forced to use the flash or risk not taking the shot at all. But so far I tell ya I just don't like to use it. Hell, I think I've only ever used it once or twice on the first day I bought my camera.

What gives?
Well, you could move in the opposite direction of flash: ATN Multi-Purpose Night Vision Equipment
Would you go this far?


- Bert

04-11-2008, 02:37 AM   #9
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On-camera flash is always an option of last resort, and built-in flash is so horrible that I typically forget my camera even has it. In fact, I wish they hadn't included one at all. DSLRs aren't pretty to begin with and that ugly protrusion only makes things worse. Plus, it gets in the way for those of us who like aperture rings and DOF scales on our lenses.

Off-camera flash is another beast altogether and something that everyone owes it to themselves to at least experiment with.

It can be set up so that it is hard to tell it from available light:




Or it can be set up to have a little "artistic" fun with shadows:




Or to illuminate things from an unusual direction:


04-11-2008, 10:33 AM   #10
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You like natural light because it looks natural. It's natural to like this natural look. Most people dislike flash because they have only used on camera, direct flash, which looks unnatural. However, it doesn't have to be this way. Used properly it should look very natural, even when used artistically.

Here is a natural light shot of my son.


Here is a flash shot.


These shots are not identical in their look, but both look natural. The first one was shot in the middle of the day in front of a large window. The second one was shot late at night with only a low watt lamp illuminating the room. High ISO noise would have ruined the shot for me. A little bounced flash made it look natural and sharp.
04-11-2008, 10:41 AM   #11
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Same here, I think I have maybe used my built in flash a dozen times or less since having my K10d for about 6 months. I did construct a bounce card for my built in flash that I have played around with and surprisingly enough, it can provide a very soft natural lighting addition,. but certainly not something I would depend on for more than just playing around with.

I have considered a 540 or a 360, but never seem to pull the trigger on laying down the cash for one...I guess chalk it up to want versus need.
Jas
04-11-2008, 02:34 PM   #12
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@davemdsn:

Great photos of your son, especially the 2nd one. Quick question, please. In looking at your Exif data, I noticed your name in the data. How did you get that entered? I have played around with Opanda a bit, but can't figure out how to insert my name. Thanks,
04-12-2008, 03:32 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jasvox Quote
I have considered a 540 or a 360, but never seem to pull the trigger on laying down the cash for one...I guess chalk it up to want versus need.
Jas
The three off-camera flash shots I posted were all done with old flash units that cost me no more than $20 each. Flash doesn't have to cost big bucks.
04-12-2008, 04:12 AM   #14
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I don't use the onboard flash much, but I have found it handy now and then as a fill flash, especially on shaded macro/closeup shots. I'm glad it's there. I more frequently use my 540 in "bounce" mode with a diffuser when shooting indoor architectural shots. I use the 12-24 alot for that and frequently f4.0 either gives too narrow a DoF, or there simply isn't enough light. I think the whole key is not to use any flash in a direct non diffused shot.

NaCl(then again, maybe my boss is right and I'm just weird)H2O
04-12-2008, 07:19 AM   #15
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I use flash A LOT! Even the on-board flash - even outside as needed. I simply prefer the clarity that a fill flash offers.

Inside I load up the hotshoe and bounce flash. The direct light of the built-in flash is just a bit harsh in some situations.
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