Spinlight 360 and the Karate Kid

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Joe has been expressing an interest in Karate. It's being offered after school, so we think it's a great opportunity for him to check it out. He tried on his brother's old Gi and it looks like we have a perfect fit. He was just so adorable, so I had to grab my camera for some pics.

I'm a dork. We all know it. I'm fully aware. Moving on...

I really wanted to capture quick well lit images. So, I took the extra three seconds to snap my Spinlight 360 gadget over my flash. I've had this contraption with me during wedding receptions and people think I'm a freak, but here's the deal. Direct flash is pretty much never flattering. It washes out your subject(s) and makes them very flat in your picture. If you want to add just a little something extra, modifying your flash is a great idea. Even if you have a pop-up flash, you can modify the harsh, direct light.  

So, here's a bit of technical jargon. I shoot in manual mode. I know that indoors with flash, I can get away with using the camera's preset sunlight white balance. It's a kelvin temp of about 4800. My go-to ISO is 1600. I really don't like to push it up too much more. Not unless I really have to. F/4 at 1/125 is a nice indoor starting point for the background exposure. I turn my flash to face the direction I'd like to force the light to come from. There's a black card in the kit that keeps any forward flash light from hitting the subject. The flash's light strictly hits the surface it's pointed at and bounces back onto your subject. From here, I usually adjust my flash's output up or down if needed.

Now, you get an image that is more dimensional and it really only took a minute to prepare. The Spinlight 360 has been an invaluable and versatile tool in my bag. Especially, when I want to modify quickly with on-camera flash. Let me know if you have any questions!