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Understanding your Camera: Flash Modes

stockxchng-digital-flash-photography-stock-photo-by-bplolThese days SLR and compact digital cameras offer a number of flash modes to choose from.  Flash is incredibly useful if you can master the way you use it.  A separate flashgun will always be ore flexible than an on camera flash but not something that you may all you have access to.  Here are some of the more popular modes and what they mean.


Auto is just that – the camera decides when flash is needed and will estimate how much flash you need.  This is good if you are on the go and need to get shots quickly in low light conditions.  Flash varies depending on the camera you use – some are very harsh some are more subtle.

Fill in Flash

This can also be the same as ‘auto’ flash although some have a specific ‘fill in’ feature.  This helps when you have a very bright background and the subject is underexposed.  You need fill in flash or a force flash (when you make the camera flash regardless of wheaten it thinks the scene needs it or not) I bright conditions otherwise the camera will presume there is enough light there.

Red Eye Flash

Red eye flash will go off twice – this minimizes the possibility of red eye because the eye would have contracted in time for the second flash.  This is a good idea when shooing people and also when dealing with light eyed models as this is more likely to occur in them.  This can’t necessarily solve the problem entirely but remember that it is very easy to remove red eye in Photoshop.

Slow sync is great for low light images or if you want creative effects.  Slow sync flash takes longer to go off so that you can capture movement and light trails. Its great for party shots for examples or moving traffic and you get a real sense of movement and colors.  It’s also a less harsh alternative when taking photographs in very low light conditions.  It also tends to keep the entire image a little more balanced, with the fort and the back of the images evenly lit.

Experiment with slow sync as there can be really varied effects depending on where you shoot and who you are shooting.

Another feature to look out for is flash exposure.  In some cameras you can turn this up or down thus reducing or cream resin the powder the flash gives off.  So if your images look too harsh then turn it down – if you need more power than turn it up!  Remember that if something is further way it may need more power to light it.

You can also turn flash off – this is very useful because sometimes the cancer may thing you need the extra boost when you don’t.

Remember that hers are lots of other things you can do with flash if you have a separate flashgun.

August 14, 2015

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