Manual, again

Another skill you may want to practice when using flash is to set the flash power to manual (instead of TTL), and see how you do. Push the “Mode” button on the back of the flash to “M”, and try various power levels.

Of course in a studio you always do this. But in an event shoot it is not usually practical. TTL is better. But still, knowing what kind of power level would work for you is a great skill, since it helps you know the possibilities.

And it is fun when you get it right. The other day during a class at Sheridan College, I guessed that 1/4 power would be the right level when bouncing the flash behind me, for this image of the class’s star student:

Star Student, shot with manual flash (Photo: Michael Willems)

Pretty much aced that huh? So having an idea is good… it’s like being at the supermarket, where you need to have some idea of whether the bill will be $7, $70, or $700. Makes you a better shopper.


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