wedding photography: bounce flash indoors … in the limo

wedding photography: bounce flash “indoors” … in the limo

This is a reminder that when you have a high-contrast situation such as when photographing the bride and groom inside the limo – then using on-camera bounce flash is your easiest way to control the lighting. Simply bounce your flash behind you into the limo. Even with the dark interior and fittings inside a limo, enough light should spill back to lift the shadow detail.

The trick here of course is to expose correctly for the ambient light, if possible. With the camera settings then dictated by the ambient light coming through the window, simply use TTL flash to give enough fill-light. Dial down the FEC if necessary.

If you look closely at this image, you’ll see the slight trace of the shadow from the flash – this is because, even though I bounced the flash upwards behind me, I hit the ceiling of the limo and with it so close to the flash, it created a secondary smaller light source instead of just the larger bounced light source. Even with that, the effect looks quite natural, and the reduced contrast certainly did help post-processing.

Post-processing was done with the RadLab plugins from Totally Rad, via a Vintage flavored recipe that I generated and saved. I used this on a layer, and pulled down the opacity to make it more subtle.


camera settings and equipment (or equivalents) used


related articles


on-camera flash modifier – the black foamie thing

I use the black foamie thing (BFT) as a truly inexpensive flash modifier to flag my on-camera flash to give me lighting indoors that truly look nothing like on-camera flash.The piece of foam (Amazon), can be ordered via this link. I cut the sheet into smaller pieces.

The BFT is held in position by two hair bands (Amazon), and the BFT is usually placed on the under-side of the flash-head.

The linked articles will give clearer instruction, especially the video clip on using the black foamie thing.

11 Comments, Add Your Own

  1. 3 says

    The black foamie thing is mostly used to flag the light for directional light. That wasn’t necessary here, since I just wanted general fill light. As far as I remember, I did have my BFT on the speedlight, but had rolled it back so it wasn’t doing much. So nope, the BFT wouldn’t have had any effect here.

  2. 10 says

    This past weekend I was shooting a birthday party with my SB-910 and I got amazing results bouncing my flash backwards, even if the ceiling was black instead of white.

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