Monday, April 6, 2009

Instructor's Tip: KISS Method: Keep It Sweet And Simple, PART 6

I hope you enjoy this week's "Instructor's Tip" by one of my favorite instructors, award winning nature photographer Russ Burden. To learn more about how Russ captured the above image, join him on one of his photo tours. Visit Russ Burden Photography to get more information.

Using Flash and Artificial Backgrounds to Control the Elements:
By using flash on small objects, lots of photographic problems can be solved yielding excellent images that otherwise would result in a bad image. By combining the following with the strategic placement of artificial backgrounds that look natural, successful photos can be made even in some inconceivable circumstances.

Flash can “stop” the wind and allow you to shoot at small apertures by using the power of the light emitted by the flash rather than the relying on ambient light. On a windy morning, an aperture of f22 with the ISO set to 100 should get you in the 1/15 sec. range. The obvious effect is a totally soft, wind blown flower. But the short duration of the flash will freeze the movement and allow the production of a tack sharp replication of the subject. An additional benefit is if the ambient light is too flat, flash can add sparkle to an image using it as a fill in light to give the subject more of a twinkle. By adding both a fill light to the side and a back light to create a modeling effect, in essence, a professionally lit portrait of the blossom is possible.


Take a class with Russ or a fellow Digital Photo Academy instructor in your area, check out the Digital Photo Academy. I took Russ' intermediate and advanced courses last year, and he continues to be a strong source of knowledge and encouragement as I progress in my photography.

Don't forget to check Take Great Pictures for Russ' most recent tips. On the home page, click on the "Photo Tips And Techniques" button in the left hand column. Additionally, check out his "Digital Tip of the Month" found by clicking on the Digital Photography button.

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