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Fill Flash

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No Flash

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Flash

You're used to using flash when there's not enough light—such as indoors.

You can also use your flash when photographing in the sun for the same reason—when there's not enough light.

Question: When is there not enough light in the sun?

Answer: The shadows

In the top photograph of the pumpkin, no flash was used.

You can tell because the shadow is dark, and there's no tell-tale hotspot from the flash.

What wrong with the photograph?

1) The pumpkin doesn't look very orange, because it's in shadow.

2) The sky and the porch railing are washed out.

The photograph on the bottom was made by pushing the button on my camera to pop up the flash.

How did the flash fix the above problems?

Original With Fill Flash
The pumpkin doesn't look very orange. The pumpkin is more orange because the flash added light to the shadow.
The sky and the porch railing are washed out. The sky and railing are darker.
Because the flash is being used to illuminate the dark shadow, the exposure system can select the best exposure for the sky and railing.

Use your flash when photographing in the sun and there are shadows.

For example, use your flash when photographing . . .

1) Someone wearing a hat with a brim is casting a shadow on his or her face.

2) Someone with sunlight on one side of his or her face.

3) A still life, such as a 1940s Bakelite radio at an outdoor flea market.

4) A valley that's half in shadow from a mountain, and half in the sun.

No, as you know, you can't do #4.

The flash on your camera will only reach about ten or so feet.

So, if your subject is further away than about ten feet, fill flash will not be useful.