Every January with the festive decorations gone I start to despair about my photos. The endless bad weather and indoor lighting can be frustrating but it’s also a great opportunity to explore how you see and use the light available.
Finding Daylight indoors.
My first tip is to move close to your windows. Even on the darkest of days your best light source is natural light as it gives the best colouring. Experiment with where you place yourself in relation to the light. In the photo above the light was coming from my right, casting a shadow over the left of the picture. In the photo below the light is behind me giving even lighting to the subject with few shadows.
South facing isn’t the be-all and end-all – these two photos were taken in our North-facing playroom. Try different spaces in your home to see where you’re getting the results you want.
Artificial light isn’t the enemy.
Sometimes you have no choice but to go with the only light source you have – a man-made one. If you’re shooting indoors under normal household lighting then adjust your white balance either by setting a custom WB (check out your manual for details of how your camera does this) or by setting white balance to tungsten. This will compensate for the yellowy cast you get in this lighting.
Try something different. In the picture below Milla picked up my Kindle to light the shot in a darkened room. The cool, white light not only lit her face but provided the catchlights in her eyes.
Get friendly with your flash. The flash on your camera is far from ideal but it is a light source conveniently on hand. We’ll be creating some red-hot pop-flash tips in the next couple of weeks so make sure you’re subscribed to our blog or following us on Facebook so you don’t miss them.
No matter what the weather there is always light to be found and getting used to finding it will make you a better photographer!
Have you taken some great low-light shots recently? Why not share them in the Capturing Childhood Flickr Pool?
Both Manual Overdrive and Collect the Moments are open for registration places are filling fast but there are still some remaining – are you starting the new year with a new skill?