Saturday, December 19, 2009

I Just Love Bounce

Like many photographers, I carry a variety of light modifiers in my lighting kit. I carry everything from umbrellas, softboxes, grids and snoots. The largest modifier I carry is a 60" umbrella, when I need something larger I resort to a bounce.

Learning how to create an effective bounce is key when working on location. One of the most important aspect to a good bounce is flagging your strobe and preventing any direct light from reaching your subject. The only light reaching your subject should be from the bounced surface.

The photo above illustrate that point clearly. I used a foam flag attached to the strobe on the subject side of the flash. You can see the shadow on the carpet in the hallway, indicating that the strobe flag is preventing light from reaching our subject directly. The size of the bounce determines the quality of the light on our subject. The size of the bounce is certainly larger than the 60" umbrella I carry. I can light a wall to what ever size I choose. It's just not practical to carry a 12' X 12' modifier in my small lighting kit.

To round out the rest of the lighting, I added a slight hair light and a background blue gelled light down the hall.


Unknown said...


I am very new to this... (newbie disclaimer)...

The wall itself doesn't look pure white. How do you prevent that from creating a color cast on your subject when bouncing?

Do you cary a white background or large reflector in your grip kit (to provide a surface of known reflective characteristics) ?


David Tejada said...

Hi Erik: I use a digital gray card, I insert it into one of the frames as a reference. In post, I'll sample the gray card and color correct all of the images.