Balancing Ambient and Strobe

This is as simple as it gets:

From Strobist Lighting 101.

This approach to mixing ambient light with flash exposure is so simple. It works with location studio lights or with off camera speedlights.

Start with a neutral ambient light exposure, in this case in open shade:


Then underexpose a little by closing down your aperture a bit, or speeding up your shutter (don’t go above your sync speed).


This is your “base” exposure. Then add your strobes. In this Strobist 101 example, there are two speedlights, one with an umbrella on the woman, and one on the background to the right.


And here are the results. You might have to adjust your light power. But it is this simple:


Be sure to read a complete explanation in Strobist Lighting 101.


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