Most food photographers will agree that natural light makes for the best photographs. Unfortunately, it is not always possible to take advantage of natural light. In these cases you are left to artificial light, usually in the form of speedlights or strobes. While artificial light can be used to produce beautiful images, it generally requires the use of some type of modifier as, on its own, artificial light tends to be harsh and flat. Modifiers come in all shapes, sizes, and forms – from the DIY bedsheet diffuser to a professional Softbox.
‘Tis the season for holiday lights and here are a few simple tips for incorporating them into great photos.
- Use a tripod – it’s going to be (almost) dark!
- Don’t wait too long. The best time to capture holiday light displays is before the background is obscured by darkness.
- Experiment with white balance – for example, compare the results of auto white balance to those obtained using the tungsten setting.
- Don’t forget the details. In addition to getting a shot of the overall display, try zooming in on specific groupings of lights.
- Try a star filter. Alternatively, try adding the effect during post-processing.
Looking for more ideas? Try these:
How to photograph Christmas lights from Strobist
How to photograph the holidays from Photojojo