Tips to getting the perfect lighting for your photographs

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When you’re out and about with your family this summer, you’re going to want to take along your camera to capture the fun and important memories. And while digital cameras do allow you to take – and retake – photographs, your subjects won’t stand by patiently long for do-overs.

Photography schools like Brooks Institute will teach you that lighting is the most important element in composing a photograph. Sometimes natural light is ideal to perfectly highlight the subjects in your photograph. But other times, you will need to manipulate the lighting to make it lighten faces and subjects the way you want it to.

Signing up for photography classes will give you detailed knowledge on your camera, photograph composition, lighting techniques and so much more. Here are a few tips on lighting manipulation to help you with your family photos this summer:

1. Filler flash may help – even outside. The flash on your camera will only illuminate items five to eight feet from the camera, so it’s not going to do any good in a large room. But if the subject of your photograph is close, and is in any sort of shadow, the flash can give additional light to help bring the subject into better visibility. Be careful that you don’t over-flash the subject, which will result in a bright spot with the rest of the photograph appearing very dark. Moving away from the object, or changing the angle of the flash, will help prevent you from over lighting.

2. Light angles are extremely important. Take the sun for example. When it’s closer to the horizon, the sun’s angle can cause extreme shadows. And if you’re taking pictures of people, those extreme shadows result in long noses and 1/2 of the face appearing darker. Whereas at high noon, when the sun is directly overhead and very bright, it can bleach out the coloring in your photographs. Unless you are specifically going for an extreme look in your photograph, having your lighting source at a gentle angle in relation to the subject in your photograph is best.

3. When taking photos in a setting with limited light, hold steady. You can adjust the aperture speed on your camera to stay open longer and allow more light to infuse the photograph, but if the camera were to move at all during the time it’s taking the photo, your image is going to be blurry. Use a tripod if possible. Or if you’re holding the camera, remember to hold your breath when pressing the button to keep the camera from moving with your body.

If you discover this summer that you have an interest in photography and want to capture more digitally than just your children’s play at the park, consider looking into photography degrees through colleges like Brooks Institute. A photography degree can provide you with more hints and tricks to capturing the perfect image every time.

Information in this article was provided by Brooks Institute. Contact Brooks Institute today if you’re interested in developing marketable knowledge and career-relevant skills with an industry-current degree program. (Brooks Institute cannot guarantee employment or salary.)