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Noobie flash question

Discussion in 'Lighting Forum' started by Joltinjess, Jun 16, 2013.

  1. Joltinjess

    Joltinjess Mu-43 Regular

    120
    Jan 6, 2013
    Port Moody, BC
    Jesse
    I've been using my E-PL1 and new dedicated flash indoors with great success, bouncing it and diffusing it. Today, for the first time, I took it out to the park to use as a fill flash for some pictures of my daughter. My mom gave me an old outfit from when I was a kid so we decided to get some shots with my daughter wearing the outfit. I was shooting in RAW so I wasn't worried at the time that I thought some of the shots were a little over exposed. I thought that I would be able to get the detail back in the whites quite easily. Is this picture more over exposed than I think? When I put it into OV2 lowering the exposure by 3 stops does nothing to bring detail back into the whites. Is this because the flash was too bright maybe?

    Sorry for the blocked out face but I don't post pictures of my daughter.

    Brielle_baseball_034_small.JPG
     
  2. inkista

    inkista Mu-43 Veteran

    332
    Jan 13, 2012
    San Diego, CA
    It's not the flash per se that's the issue--it's that your flash limited your camera to the maximum sync speed of the camera body (1/160s). Outside, in bright sunlight, you'd probably have to be at f/16 or so to get a properly exposed background at 1/160 and iso 100 (consider the sunny 16 rule).

    If your flash (and camera) have high-speed sync (FP TTL) capability, this is the time to use it.
     
  3. Joltinjess

    Joltinjess Mu-43 Regular

    120
    Jan 6, 2013
    Port Moody, BC
    Jesse
    Looking back, I got so fixated on working with the new flash that I didn't notice that the shutter speed was flashing and that the aperture had to be closed down.

    As far as I know the E-PL1 does not have high speed sync so I will be stuck with the bigger depth of field.
     
  4. RobWatson

    RobWatson Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Yup, blown highlights are unrecoverable. ND filter might come in handy so you don't have to stop down so much. Polarizer might help (not as a polarizer but to drop the ambient by ~1/2) if you don't have an ND filter.
     
  5. inkista

    inkista Mu-43 Veteran

    332
    Jan 13, 2012
    San Diego, CA
    Don't think so. This review says that it's capable of high-speed sync (FP TTL).

    What flash are you using? With an Oly FL unit, you set FP TTL as the flash mode to get high-speed sync--it's not something you set from the camera menus.

    If you're using a 3rd party flash, though, it may not have high-speed sync capability, and ND filters may be the way to go.
     
  6. Joltinjess

    Joltinjess Mu-43 Regular

    120
    Jan 6, 2013
    Port Moody, BC
    Jesse
    It is a third party flash that is not capable of high speed sync. What stop of ND filter should I get? I don't have any right now. I still would want the auto focus to work.
     
  7. RobWatson

    RobWatson Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Start with sunny 16 rule and work from there using the aperture and exposure time/ISO you prefer. This will narrow the range and get you close. Proper AF with ND may not work so well.

    Your exif data shows ISO 100 and F5.6 so that implies via sunny 16 shutter of 1/800. If you are stuck at 1/160 from synch speed then you need ND5 to maintain ISO100, F5.6 and 1/160 shutter. Ballpark anyway. Sunny 16 is more like a guideline than an actual rule or law.

    You need to figure out if your flash can deliver 5x more power to provide fill through the ND. If you recall the GN used (or the power setting) and the flash can provide the additional 5x power you should be there.

    I'm not certain but I bet ND5+F5.6 should allow AF to work OK.
     
  8. Joltinjess

    Joltinjess Mu-43 Regular

    120
    Jan 6, 2013
    Port Moody, BC
    Jesse
    Thank you Rob. Everything makes sense except the more power on the flash part. If I use a filter that is just on the lens do I still need more power?
     
  9. RobWatson

    RobWatson Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Well, the light from the flash bounces off your subject through the filter and into the lens ... so flash output is also attenuated by the filter. Thus the need for more power.