Learning photography January 28 2015, 0 Comments

This is an excerpt blog post from www.speedlighter.ca, the go-to instructional photography blog. A post almost every day. The way to learn photography like a pro, from a pro. I occasionally copy a blog post from there to this news area, for your information. 


Your flash has a ZOOM function. This allows the light to be sent "where the lens looks". After all, if you use a telephoto lens, why send light to the sides, where the lens cannot see? This would waste energy.

Normally, the zoom factor is set automatically, depending on the lens. Look at the back of your flash and zoom your lens just after touching the shutter button: the flash will alter its zoom as you move the zoom lens through its range. No work for you. So the light goes only where the lens looks.

But you can override this. Set flash zoom to "M" (manual) and select whatever zoom setting you desire.

Like here: I used a wide angle lens, but I zoomed the flash in to a much narrower beam:

See? A small oval of light near the centre (you can aim the flash).

Why would I want to do this?

  • Sometimes, I do this for effect.
  • Sometimes, like during a bright day, I do it to get more power: a concentrated small beam is brighter than a wide area.
  • And sometimes, I do it for correction.

Like here: My garage during the recent garage art sale. Without flash, it looked like this:

The back was dark, so I needed flash. But I did not want that flash to light up the close areas, which were already very bright.

Solution: zoom the flash in manually. The lens was 16mm; I zoomed the flash to about 50mm if I recall correctly. That sent light only there where it was needed.

Problem solved. More even exposure, without overexposure of the foreground.


Opportunity Knocks: You really can learn everything I know: I have made it easy. See http://learning.photography for all my photography learning books. And decorate your home or office with wall art: the garage sale is permanent. Contact me if you want to see my prints.