Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Flare Baby!

It's no secret that I'm slightly obsessed with sun flare.  In fact, I probably go out of my way to seek it out and most likely over use it.  But hey, it's only summer for so long here in MN so I go with it. 

Nicole gave some really awesome tips about shooting into the sun.  When you are just learning photography, you will most likely hear that you should never shoot full sun for optimal results.  In fact, it's literally drilled into your brain to find that open shade everywhere you go.  We are trained to search for the most perfect light as photographers and for most, that definition does not include full sun.  Not for me, that golden hour, right before the sun sets when the sun is big and bright in the sky is my favorite time to shoot.  Whether I'm shooting into it, or in open shade, it's beautiful.

I like how Nicole explained that you can get flare using any camera and any setting, but if you really want to bring your shot up to a whole new level, manual is a must.  Last summer I spent a lot of time shooting in aperture mode on my 7d and while I got the results I was looking for, I spent a good amount of time tweaking my shots in Photoshop to get them just right.  Now I shoot manual and my shots come out of the camera needing little photoshopping to get them right. 

What do I mean?  Well, in manual I can get the flare and haze AND expose the skin properly.  I HAVE CONTROL, not my camera and that is the key to this.  I promise, it's a scary thought, but well worth the effort.

Here is a little tutorial I wrote about a month ago on shooting in full sun.  If anything, it will just encourage you to get out of your comfort zone and try something new and fun!  Not every shot will make the cut, but with a little practice you will nail one!

Here are some of my favorite flare shots. 

Sometimes my flare is subtle, just producing some bright light at the edge of my shots.

And sometimes my flare can get ridiculously out of control.

And by ridiculous I mean crazy flare!  But, it's a dramatic shot and that's what I was going for.

Whatever your preference, it can't hurt to play around and see what that camera of yours can do!

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