I was one of those folks who used the term “natural light photographer” to detract from the fact that I had NO idea how to use off-camera lighting. I could work natural light like a boss, but when there was no natural light available? I was sort of screwed. As professional photographers, it’s our job to be able to adapt to whatever lighting scenario we’re given, so not knowing how to overcome a less-than-ideal lighting scenario is going to present a serious problem when your client is expecting professional-grade images.
Don’t get me wrong- I’m not saying you should drop everything and spend thousands on studio-grade equipment, or go back to school for a second degree in advanced lighting. But as professionals, we DO need to know how to adapt! And that’s where something like The Lighting Guide comes into play.
I’ve had the privilege of learning from Justin & Mary more times than I can count, and one of the biggest takeaways has been that lighting doesn’t have to be scary! I attended Walk Through A Wedding with J&M in June of 2012, and two days after the workshop I shot a wedding where I used off-camera flash for the first time. And I rocked it! Why? Because they taught me not to be scared of my own equipment.
Just last weekend at Patrick & Katie’s wedding, I encountered the challenge of shooting in a bridal suite with very little available light, but rather than panicking, I knew exactly what to do because J&M teach about being prepared for this exact situation. We broke out the octabank, popped up a reflector, and I shot Katie’s gorgeous details quickly and efficiently. And in the end, the images are just as beautiful as if I’d had a large bank of window light to work with! See?? I bet you had no idea these were shot with artificial light!
I am the QUEEN of getting-intimidated-by-complicated-things,-thus-giving-up-before-I-ever-really-try. So trust me, if I can understand and begin to master off-camera flash, so can you. It’s less intimidating than you think, and you’re more capable than you know! The Lighting Guide has everything you need to get started, and it’s a comprehensive and friendly read so you don’t feel like you’re thumbing through a textbook. If you’re struggling and looking for help on lighting, or just want a better understand of how light works and how to use it more to your advantage, I cannot recommend this guide enough!
And, good news! If you decide to invest in your education with The Lighting Guide and you use the code “ABBY” it’ll take $79 (more than 1/3 of the cost!) off the price. So really, there’s no excuse not to go buy it like… right now. Get out there and rock it, friends!