Should one use a flash bracket indoor?

Discussion in 'General flash photography, lighting, and technique' started by ciocc, Aug 2, 2007.

  1. After reading many many threads in this forum, I am very interested in getting a flash bracket to shoot outdoor events. My understanding is that a bracket helps eliminate red eyes and pushes the shadow down. But how about using it indoors when I have a light color ceiling to bounce off the flash? Does it still offer any advantages?

    Thanks.
     

  2. You're not always going to have a low enough ceiling indoors to use a bounce flash so yes it is useful indoors as well. As a matter of fact I find it more necessary indoors than out.
     
  3. A flash bracket is more important for indoor shooting than outdoors. Unless you're using a snoot, some of the strobe's light will still be directed forward, even in bounce mode... and you want it to be to avoid deep shadows in the eye sockets, under the nose, and under the chin. Raising the flash in landscape orientation will help locate shadows behind the subjects. Using a bracket in portrait orientation will keep the flash centered over the lens, which will minimize side shadows.
     
  4. Billy Ng

    Billy Ng

    722
    Jan 22, 2007
    Hartsdale, NY
    I go a different route ... I never point my flash at my subject unless I'm outdoors and its for fill. The following are all indoors with a camera mounted SB-800:

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  5. Thank you all of you for the valuable information, I have just learned something new from all of you.
     
  6. Bouncing a light from the ceiling is a good way to go and will elimnate distracting shadows that fall behind the subject. The more you get into this you will find all kinds of devices that while bouncing light off the ceiling will also direct some light forward to eliminate shadows from from the nose and eye sockets. I like to use a bracket when I am shooting with an on camera flash so that I am ready for any eventuality. At times I will bounce off of a wall, ceiling or even use it direct for some things. By having your flash on a bracket you insure that you are not causing red eye in your subjects. I just think it is a good practice to have a bracket when shooting indoors.
     
  7. Another question.

    What kind of diffusers do you use when shooting with a bracket indoors? Is it better to use something like the one that comes with the SB-800 when bouncing the flash and use the softbox type when shooting straight at the subject? I am asking this because I want to find out if it is worth buying a mini softbox to use with the speedlight. Thanks.
     
  8. The Stofen that comes with the flash is too small to be very effective. Bouncing off the ceiling spreads out the light for you but then it directs it downward on the people creating some deeper shadow areas on their eye sockets and under their nose and chin. I have used a Gary Fong diffuser to good advantage but it is costly to buy and difficult to transport. Lately I have taken to using a piece of foam paper put on my flash head with a rubber band. This was first brought to my attention by Uncle Frank and I made six of them for 69 cents. I will go look for the tread that first introduced them and will post it as an update to this message.

    Update: Ah yes here it is. Read this thread and it will tell you how to make them. They work great and I carry a couple with me wherever my camera goes. Sometimes we think we have to spend a lot of money for something that works good but this little item dispells that.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  9. Gordon ... thanks for the link. I've come across with this home-made product before but decided on a Demb Flash diffuser. It's been working great for me and I could adjust the angle of the reflector to control the intensity of the light (in addition to the flash compensation).

    But I've also seen Uncle Frank using a softbox on his speedlight when mounted on a bracket. So I'm wondering if a softbox is a better solution than a bounce card when shooting straight at the subject with the flash mounted on a bracket.

    Any comments from UF? Thanks.
     
  10. I make my choice based on the characteristics of the location. Using bounce flash outdoors is just a waste of batteries, cause upward directed photons will never return to illuminate the subject. The same is true for indoor locations where the ceiling and walls are dark. In either of those situations, I use the Lumiquest softbox or even the sb800's diffuser dome. Or course, for a Strobist, the best solution is an off camera flash through an umbrella :). But for indoor work, where there's a white ceilling or walls, using a bounce card can be very effective, and affords maximum mobility for the photographer. Gives results like this.

    83047935.
     
  11. Thanks for the explanation. Now I understand more.
     
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