Having Fun with Single Speedlight Photography

I’ve been wanting to get a lot more use and be a little more creative when using my Nissin di866 Pro MK II Flash Gun, so I recently I attended a workshop, run by Going Digital at Fountains Abbey, North Yorkshire on how to do Portrait Photography with Flash. The workshop cost £75.00 for six hours of theoretical and practical work, and have got to admit it has improved my photography even more.

Hazza - Part of the Portrait with Flash Photography Workshop

Hazza – Part of the Portrait with Flash Photography Workshop
Nikon D90: ISO 200 f6.7 @ 1/60 – Flash Fired

Just some of the things we learned on the course were how to shoot above flash sync speed, which on my Nikon D90 is 1/200, to get better exposure on backgrounds etc, and bouncing flash off reflectors or objects.

Now, I openly admit that I am more a landscape photographer, but, and I know I am on a new learning curve here, I am really getting into this flash photography game with either the flash on or off the camera.

Simply by taking the flash off the camera, and facing it close to the wall on the window ledge, I was able to place Bo in shadow. I thought it turned out OK!

Hidden in the Shadows - Portrait with Flash Photography

Hidden in the Shadows
Nikon D90, ISO 100, f5.6 @ 1/125

This next example is of my partner, Debby, who let me bug her for photographs while we were out for the day at Hardwick Hall, Sedgefield. I first took a shot with the flash turned off, exposing for the background. Next the flash was turned on, and a second shot taken, resulting in the image below.

Debby - Portrait Photography with Flash

Nikon D90 | ISO 400| f5.6 | 1/125 | Flash Fired

I am also learning that the technique also works great with non-people photography too! I kept my 50mm macro lens on for most of the day, and got some great shots like my example below:

Macro Flash Photography Example

Macro Flash Photography Example
Nikon D90 | 50mm Sigma Macro Lens | ISO 200 | f8 | 1/500 | Flash Fired

After doing the workshop, I came home and ordered a couple of umbrellas, a 5-in-1 reflector, and a flash head to mount the flash on to a light-stand I want to do more of this type of photography, and although I am limited to only one flash gun, you can still get some great results.

For the example below, I set up the flash gun on the light-stand with a white shoot-through umbrella. The camera was set up on a tripod with a Sigma 10-20mm lens, and I took a photograph without the flash firing to get the exposure I wanted for the sky.

After turning the flash gun on, I took a second shot which illuminated the car. Without the flash going off, the car would have been mostly silhouetted out because of the position of the sun.

Some post processing work was done in Photoshop to get my final image.

Off Camera Flash Example using a White Shoot Through Umbrella

Off Camera Flash Example using a White Shoot Through Umbrella

Guaranteed, I am going to be doing a lot more of this type of photography, and will post more photos soon.

Below are a couple of great tutorial links I have found and would like to share with you. Hope they are of some use, and I hope you enjoy your Flash Photography experiences as I am doing. More will be added soon.

10 Ways to Shoot Stunning Portraits With Only One Light

Strobist – Learn How To Use Light

One thought on “Having Fun with Single Speedlight Photography

  1. Pingback: Having Fun with Single Speedlight Photography « Mark White Photography

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