One of the misconceptions about bounce flash photography that many photographers cling to, is that you absolutely need a white wall or ceiling near you. While it does help, this shouldn't stop you from trying to be a little adventurous with on-camera bounce flash to see if it gets you the results you want. There have been several articles on the topic of bouncing off various other surfaces, or, not any particular surface nearby:
Bounce flash photography at wedding receptions (bride: Juana)
Wedding reception lighting with one flash (groom: Read more inside...
A comment posted to the article, directional light from your on-camera flash, asked a lot of questions about bounce flash photography. While most of these have been answered over time in various articles, it might be a good thing to pull it all together in directly answering those questions here.
This uncomplicated portrait of Anelisa that shows specific elements in how I bounce flash:
catchlights in the eyes
directional light which can be observed here as that gradient of light across her cheek
no hard shadows from direct Read more inside...
wedding portraits: finding something to bounce your flash off
One of the frequent questions that come up, is what to do when there is nothing to bounce your flash off. When working indoors and there are bounce-able surfaces around me, my first instinct is to use on-camera bounce flash. It is easy to use, and the results can look surprisingly good, especially if you consider the minimal effort that went into it. No extra gear to carry around and set up. But when there is nothing to bounce flash off, you have to adapt your technique ... Read more inside...