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4808_SB-700-AF-Speedlight-front Many think of flash as a tool you use only when there isn’t enough available light to shoot with. If it’s dark, simply pop up the built-in flash and make the photograph. Never mind that the photographs don’t look especially good. The direct, hard lighting a speedlight delivers may not produce fine-art, but at least it ensures that we got something usable. However, flash can be an incredible creative tool especially when you have the flexibility of an external flash to work with. It’s an investment that provides more than just power, but choices that can improve the look of a photograph. [click to continue…]

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Lumopro LP-180 and Profoto Speedlite Speedring test with Natalie (6 of 10)ISO 12501-40 sec at f - 4.0

When a photographer is just trying to get into lighting they don’t realize a heck of a lot. It can also be very tough–and that’s why lots of them also say that they’re a natural light photographer. But just like riding a bike without training wheels, it takes some practice. As you continue to experiment with lighting, you’ll get better and better after trying it out and experimenting with what it can do.

Here are some basics to keep in mind.

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We are dependant on light to make our photographs. So, it is important to learn to evaluate the quality of light that we have to work with to determine the final look of our photographs. Identifying and recognizing the qualities of the light results in us making important decisions regarding exposure, white balance and even camera position. Here are some questions to ask yourself to help you make the most of the light you have to work with whether you are photographing people, landscapes, food or abstracts.

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Four Thirds and Micro Four Thirds users don’t seem to get too much love when it comes to strobist items–and so they’re forced to shoot with manual flashes. But now they have the new Nissin i40 flash that was introduced back in February–and is being billed towards Four Thirds users. However, Four Thirds flashes work on Micro Four Thirds cameras too with no issues.

They’re touting this flash as being pocket-sized at under 3 1/2″ high and under 3 ounces. Additionally, it also has nine stops of output power–which mean that it doesn’t go in thirds of stops like most TTL flashes. But it has loads of other features like wireless flash capabilities, HSS at up to 1/8000, and overall retails for $269 when it becomes available.

More images are after the jump.

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Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Olympus EM5 Link Cosplay shoot (11 of 23)ISO 200

When it comes to light, your images don’t need to look like there was flash added to them. In fact, some of the best photographers try to not fight natural light, but augment what it can do with flash by adding just the right amounts in specific spots. Doing this takes a lot of shooting and experimenting followed by careful analysis of what you actually are doing to make the changes in camera look like what you want them to.

And to do this, you don’t need anything extraordinary or amazingly fancy.

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Macro photography can be a great hobby to do at home and can even be therapeutic. But getting better macro images isn’t simply a matter of composition and making sure that the subject is in focus–it’s also about technicalities. In fact, it could even be one of the most technical forms of photography.

Here are some tips on how to get better macro shots.

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