Gelling flash for Incandescent light / Tungsten light
The color temperature of the light from a flash / speedlite is around 5400K. While the actual numerical value might have little meaning to many photographers, it does mean that light from a flashgun will look a lot cooler than the light from an environment would with tungsten/incandescent light. That warm glow of tungsten light, which is around 2800K but varies a lot in actual value, makes the flash appear too cold, or too blue. However, if you simply adjust your white balance so that the flash appears neutral, your background Read more inside...
Gelling your flash, and post-processing for deep blue skies
The warm light from the nearly-setting sun, accentuated with gelled flash. Towards the end of the recent photography workshop, we were shooting on the rooftop - the warm tone of the sunlight contrasting beautifully with the blue sky.
To punch it even more, we added gelled flash via an off-camera speedlight in a softbox. We had to gel the speedlight of course, to make sure the blue color balance of the flash didn't kill the natural light. We used a 1/2 CTS gel here which brought the flash's WB down to around 3700K. (This Read more inside...
Since the light from a speedlight is relatively quite cold, (ie, blue-ish), it can create an unpleasant color cast when you use flash with existing warm ambient light. A typical problem situation would be the Incandescent environment that we often find ourselves in at night. But there are other times when the WB from our speedlights (typically around 5400K) is just too cold (blue) compared to the light we have at sunset. (The Daylight WB preset relates to color of daylight during the middle of the day.) Then we need to do something with our Read more inside...
The idea of gelling your flash for effect has been a topic here a few times. I most often use gels on my flash to correct my flash when working with tungsten / incandescent light. There are times though when I gel my flash just for effect, creating a shift between my foreground (lit by gelled flash) and my background.
In the examples shown in the several articles here, there wasn't the type of background where the effect can clearly be seen on easily recognizable "neutral" background. In the article turning day into night, we turned Read more inside...
I have used this photograph several times in the past to illustrate various aspects of flash photography in low light, so it might be time to discuss this image more thoroughly.
We'll also pull together a few other topics and see how it all comes together at this one point:
Dragging the shutter
Gelling your flash
Bounce flash technique
Direction of light
The advantage of using TTL flash
Working alongside a videographer
Read more inside...