Saturday, 27 June 2009

Flash Modifiers

If you are interested in modifying and controlling the light that emits from your flash unit then read on.

There are different types of accessories that you can put on the end of your flash unit to control, limit or enlarge your light source. They provide various results depending on your creativity and lighting requirements.

Used in combination, they can enhance your lighting setup. I will have some real world samples for you in a few weeks.

Here is a test of all the modifiers I have to help you (and I) visualise the output :-)

SETTINGS: 430EX II flash in manual mode at 1/4 power, on light stand. Fired remotely with Elinchrom Skyports. Camera is on manual mode, settings do not change and are not important for the tests.

I am zooming the flash head, not the lens. The flash is about 2 metres from the wall.

Bare flash, 24mm at 1/4 power.

Bare flash, 105mm at 1/4 power.

85cm shoot through umbrella at 24mm, 1/4 power.

85cm shoot through umbrella at 105mm, 1/4 power.

1/4 inch grid on flash head, 24mm at 1/4 power.

1/8th inch grid on flash head, 24mm at 1/4 power.

5 inch snoot at 24mm, 1/4 power.

8 inch snoot at 24mm, 1/4 power.

5 inch bounce card, flash pointed up, 24mm at 1/4 power.
5 inch bounce card, flash pointed up, 105mm at 1/4 power.

5 inch bounce card, flash pointed up, 24mm at 1/4 power (view ceiling in view)

5 inch bounce card, flash pointed up, 105mm at 1/4 power (with ceiling in view)

The umbrella softens the edges of light and makes it a slightly larger light source that will wrap around the subject and so soften the shadows. Take a look at the edges of the test shots.

I like the spotlight effect that the grids provide, nice and round and well defined. Relatively soft edges too. Great for isolating and picking out your subjects from the front..

The snoots produce quite harsh light, as you would expect from such a small light source. So uses are limited to highlights that don't hit the front side of the subject.

The bounce card throws a small amount of light forward so great for fill-in whilst bouncing.

I have the "Honl Speed System" which you can review here.


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