This crash course teaches you everything you need to know about using flash for portraits
Flash is almost an inevitability when it comes to portraits. At some point or another, you’re going to find yourself frustrated with the “natural light” and you’re going to want to either try to overpower it or complement it to improve its looks or you’re going to give in completely, head indoors and go for a more studio-style setup away from the wind and rain and crappy weather. Whatever the reason, it’s as inevitable as Thanos.
But where do you begin? What gear do you need to get started? What do all the terms mean? How do you use them? What are modifiers? Key light? What? Well, all these questions and more are answered in this hour and a half long video from photographer Ed Verosky. It’s a complete crash course on using flash to shoot portraits, although much of what’s said applies to flash in any context.
Ed covers pretty much everything you’d ever need to know in this video. At least, everything you need to know when you’re just starting out. You’re not going to be Joe McNally from day one, so you don’t need to know about how to light a plane with 47 speedlights. But you do need to learn how to use just one and how to use it effectively before moving onto larger and more elaborate setups.
Buying too much gear right from the off is the biggest trap that photographers fall into when starting their journey with flash. They buy far more than they know how to handle and never master any of it. So, watch the video, start off with a minimalist flash setup and master it before you figure out what you want to buy next!
John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.