Most of the entry-level DSLR cameras these days come with pop-up flash. You can even use an external flash if your lighting requirements differ for your particular shooting needs. However, flash or the light emitting from it can cause major disruptions in some of your shots. This is where you would want to make use of flash diffusers while shooting with your flash activated. What exactly is a flash diffuser and why do we need to use it? We will check out the advantages that flash diffusers bring to you and also share a few tips on how to use flash diffusers.
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What is a Flash Diffuser?
A flash diffuser is what its name suggests. It helps you diffuse the flash or rather the intensity of it. It is a type of light modifier and is generally placed on the upper part of the flash, generally on the external flash system. It is used for softening the hard light emitted by the flash.
The flash emits the concentrated light, and a flash diffuser will help you create more flattering and more evenly distributed light as compared to the direct light from the flash. There are flash diffusers explicitly designed for specific conditions and scenarios.
Why do you need to use a Flash Diffuser?
Well, the camera flash can produce undesirable results in many cases. Some of the issues you may face include harsh shadows that lack details, colors washed out and even a few other adverse effects that make your shots unusable.
This kind of lighting can result in unnatural pictures and non-flattering lighting and thus damage your shots. That is precisely why you would be advised not to use flash in certain circumstances. However, what if you are needed to shoot your images in ultra low light scenarios? What if there is little or no light available where you get access to no natural or artificial light of any nature? Of course, the modern cameras tend to offer you excellent low light photography and even night photography with the built-in flash. However, in some situations, an external flash can be an issue and create the undesirable effects we just mentioned.
That is precisely where a flash diffuser can come quite handy enough and address your concerns to a great extent. The diffuser will help you take care of the light conditions and soften it to meet your requirements.
How does the Flash Diffuser work?
Most conventional flash diffusers available are made of plastic and come a rectangular snap on a dome box type construction. The material used usually is white and has a semi-transparent build. This type of diffuser can create a softened light effect and remove the harshness of the flash.
However, the actual flash diffusers you would be opting for will be dependent upon the exact requirements you may have and are available in multiple shapes and sizes. You need to analyze your exact requirements before choosing the flash diffuser you want to buy.
Some professional photographers even consider opting for some “Do It Yourself” or DIY options as well. White coffee filters and plastic food containers can also do the trick if you are aware of how to do it.
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How to use a Flash Diffuser?
The flashes – external or built-in – emit a sharp and unidirectional burst of light. It will illuminate whatever it is pointed at. A Flash Diffuser can help you spread the cone-shaped light rays and thereby soften it for enhanced performance. This will help you illuminate more part of the scene that you are photographing and thus produce an even light effect that will help you do away the shadows and other undesirable effects of the flashlight.
However, if you are planning to use a flash diffuser with a horseshoe mount flash, it may not be easy to find the exact effects you are trying to get with your shots. Of course, the diffuser will help you diffuse the light and make it less concentrated, but still, it will still be harsh and pointed in one direction. If you want to use a flash diffuser, it should be practical to go with the external flash unit.
One of the best results you would be able to achieve would be to try different angles and directions for the light. This will help get a better effect. Bouncing the light from the flash onto the ceiling or a wall can produce a few good results.
A Few Tips for using a Flash Diffuser
A plastic flash diffuser can be one of the best alternatives than opting for other expensive options. These diffusers can help you achieve the results in a few regular days to day scenarios where you want to use the flash diffuser and avoid the issues you may be facing with the harsh light emitted from the flash.
One of the other options you can check out would be to use a Flash Light Shaper. It is also referred to as Flash Bounce. This accessory lets you bounce the light from the ceiling or the wall. This method can be used for converting any of the surfaces into a diffused light source. This can also provide a professional look to your business if you are opting for photography as a business.
You can also get creative with your flash diffusers and provide a new look and appearance to your photography. You will be limited only by your creativity and come up with as many multiple ideas as would be feasible. One such example will involve using colored flash diffusers. This can help you achieve a dramatic appearance to your shots.
The Concluding Thoughts
Well, if you are looking for gathering the information on how diffusers can be helpful and how are they used for improving the light performance of your photographs, we assume we have been able to provide enough information on the concept.
Of course, the flash diffusers can help you achieve the best results for enhanced performance in terms of your flash photography, but the study of these options can be a separate subject and needs to be learned professionally. However, this article should be one of the best alternatives to understand the basic concepts of flash diffusers and choosing the right option for your requirements.