Photographing with Fill Flashes

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When you photograph songbirds from a blind, this question usually arises. Should you use flashes? In this video, professional bird photographers Doug Gardner and Gary Carter show you how they use flash units. To open up the shadow areas, Gary uses his flash often, but he dials it down to minus two or minus three. He will also employ a flash extender or beamer to illuminate the bird, not the entire scene. The goal is to pop a glint in the eye and light up the dark areas. Basically, you are imitating full sunlight. Using the flash unit and attachments, Doug and Gary photograph cardinals, white-throated sparrows, downy woodpeckers, and blue birds feeding their young.


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