A setting that has always worked for me to achieve great indoor photography. This came about after many corporate photography functions in doors and wedding photography inside churches. These settings allow you to see people or subjects in the foreground and still see the warmth of the room or any features or lights in the background.
Settings for Indoor Photography
- Put you camera onto M for manual (this is the setting on Canon’s, not sure about other models).
- Set you aperture to as big as it will go eg. F4.0 or F2.8.
- Set your shutter speed to around 1/60. It is hard to shoot handheld with anything below 1/60. As a rule of thumb you should never shoot lower than your focal distance while handheld. Eg on a 50mm lense you should never shoot lower than 1/50 sec.
- You will then need to use you external flash, if you can bounce your flash do this, if you have a catch light reflector built into your flash even better.
- Take a few shots and see what they look like.
- If they are not bright enough try bumping up your ISO to 200 then 400 and so on until you achieve an acceptable result.
This style of photography will have great lighting on people in the foreground and still have the impact of the room lighting and features in the shot. Just a plain old photo with the flash will normally burn out people in the foreground and black out the background. Give it a go!
You can see some examples of Jayson putting this technique to work at his site – particularly the Corporate Photos Section.