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View Full Version : HELP! Ring flash


Ianf
26th January 2011, 04:26 PM
Hi All,

As I am still a relative newbie to the DSLR scene, can you advise if a ring flash would be of benefit for portrait photos ?, seen a few in the gallery and they look like a good effect, still messing around with remote flash etc so any help would be of great help, :confused:

photo_owl
26th January 2011, 07:25 PM
the simple answer is no, and the more complex one is yes......

i'll try and explain

ring flash provides a flat lighting - designed to provide clarity to an object, but, arguably, to remove character.

thus the no reply when used a s single light source

however, where you have strong point lighting (could be ambient, direct sun or reflected etc, or additional lighting sources) to work with the ring can be a useful element. It also works well as a fill for the same reason

I hope this makes sense

stevednp3
26th January 2011, 07:31 PM
I wouldnt advise using a ring flash for portraits as a single light source, unless you was after a certain look or taking photos of parts like the eye etc. The overall look would be very flat

Id stick with perfecting off camera flash and maybe invest in an umbrella and fixing to soften the flash

A good book to learn lighting techniques is Captured by the Light by David A.Ziser - this helped me learn lots of neat tricks ;)

Hope this helps *chr

Ianf
26th January 2011, 08:11 PM
Hi,

thank you for the info, I invested in a remote "hot shoe" so I will stick to that, the umbrella idea looks good,
Already searching for the book, thanks again, these are the reasons I joined this forum. *yes

smartwombat
26th January 2011, 08:59 PM
Ring flash was a "look" in fashion photography that went away so long ago I can't remember when.
So long ago it might be coming back into fashion :)

Look up the strobist blog for ideas on how to use simple flashes effectively.

Ellie
26th January 2011, 11:26 PM
I don't know about the other things that can happen but this evening in a class I watched somebody use a ringflash for portraits, they will need to carefully edit each one because of the circular light in the model's pupils.

Ross the fiddler
27th January 2011, 11:09 AM
I don't know about the other things that can happen but this evening in a class I watched somebody use a ringflash for portraits, they will need to carefully edit each one because of the circular light in the model's pupils.

Some people find that attractive, but maybe they are just from the era when it was a fashion. For me I liked the flairs (trousers) but not the ring light. Actually our photographic club had a bring your camera & try things night last year & one of the things to try was model shooting with the large ring light (18"), but I don't have permission to show her photograph, except maybe a closeup of her eyes.
1135

photo_owl
27th January 2011, 12:04 PM
I don't know about the other things that can happen but this evening in a class I watched somebody use a ringflash for portraits, they will need to carefully edit each one because of the circular light in the model's pupils.

do you edit out all of the lights that appear in pupils Ellie?

(generally I do - but the RF is no different from any other light sources in this context and the worst is a pair of big softboxes! ie the normal main lighting)

I agree the circle of light is unattractive as a highlight

Ellie
30th January 2011, 01:44 AM
do you edit out all of the lights that appear in pupils Ellie?
I haven't a clue, because I only very rarely take pictures of people and they're usually far enough away for it not to make any impact.

It just struck me that the ring flash reflection looked a bit unpleasant and unnatural - but we all think differently and fashions change. :)