Free Photography Tutorials, Beginners to Advanced

Diffusers for soft lighting

In order to produce a soft light that will in turn produce soft edged shadows, we need to spread the light out with a diffuser. There are several different kinds available, window lights, 'swimming pools' etc, but the most useful, versatile and portable is the umbrella. They can be used to shoot through or to reflect the light. The parabolic shape helps to focus or de-focus the light a little (depending on which way round you use it), and they fold up nicely for transport and storage.

Studio Lighting translucent umbrella
Shooting through a translucent umbrella
Studio Lighting two light setup
A two light setup, one through and one bounced
Studio Lighting bounced light
Bouncing the light into an opaque umbrella
Studio Lighting back lighting
Using the flash without a diffuser

Other tutorials in this section


Introduction page.

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Available Light

Getting the best out of the sun.

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Using Reflectors

Filling in the shadows.

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Break away from the in-camera flash.

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Fill-in Flash

Soften those shadows.

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Red Eye Removal

A quick remedy in Photoshop.

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Studio Lighting

An introduction to indoor lighting.

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Inverse Square Law

A bit of Physics for those who feel the need.

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