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Join photographer and teacher Ben Long as he describes the tools, creative options, and special considerations involved in shooting with a DSLR camera at night or in low-light conditions, such as sunset or candlelight. The course addresses exposure decisions such as choice of aperture and shutter speed and how they impact depth of field and the camera’s ability to freeze motion.
Ben also shows how to obtain accurate color balance in tungsten and fluorescent lighting situations, and how to postprocess the images in Photoshop to remove noise caused by higher ISO settings. He also demonstrates accessories that can greatly expand your low-light photography options.
I want to show you one very simple mistake that people often make when they're working in low-light situations, and that's they do this. Your pop-up flash is really not what you want to do in this particular situation. This flash is not meant to brighten up a dark area; it's meant to fill in shadows in bright daylight. The problem with the pop-up flash on your camera is that it's right in front of your subject. It's throwing a bunch of light directly into their face, and we're used to having light come from above. It's a whole lot of light. It's coming from the wrong direction. It's not a very pretty color. There are a lot of things that can go wrong when you use the pop-up flash in a low-light situation like this.
First of all, people can just look like they've got radiation burns; they've got all this garish light on there. You can use the flash exposure compensation feature of your camera to try and dial it back. But even if you do that, they still look just like they're lit from the wrong direction. We've got another problem here, because with this big window that's sitting back behind the table, if I take a flash, I possibly get this big reflection in the window. There is really just no good that can come from this flash right now, in this situation. So I'm going to put it down and leave it down and continue to work with natural light.
This is, again, the great advantage of these modern digital cameras is they can do so well, even in a low-light situation like this, that I don't need to worry about my pop-up flash.
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