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How to Use Dome Diffuser to Eliminate Shadows and Harsh Light

A Guest Post by PhotographersOnUTube.

Diffuser.jpgOne question I frequently get asked is how to get rid of shadows in the picture when the subject is close to a wall?

Well, it depends on if the shadow is being created due to a specific angle of the speed light or you’re using some sort of a flash diffuser. A lot of photographers assume that the omni dome diffuser you get with your speed light is essential to making the light softer, which is not always true.

In most cases that dome diffuser is used to spread the light in a very challenging lighting situation when you can’t bounce anything off the ceiling or walls. The plastic diffuser helps you project the light forward and in all direction to illuminate your subject. But what if you are able to bounce the light off the ceiling without any difficulty? In a situation like this, omni dome diffuser can create shadows behind your subject and in some cases the light rather looks harsh and unflattering.

No Shadows 1.jpg

In the sample pictures (above) you’ll notice shadows behind the subject and the flash on the subject’s face is not very soft. This was taken with a dome diffuser that comes with most speed light these days.

In the next picture you’ll notice that the shadows are gone and the light becomes much softer. I simply removed the diffuser and bounced the light straight off the ceiling. It was a 20 foot ceiling and I had no problem creating soft light.

Take a look at some other sample pictures where my subject is very close to the wall but there are no shadows simply because I did not use dome diffuser which helped me eliminate any shadows and harsh light.

No Shadows 2.jpg

No shadows 3.jpg

If I were in a situation where the ceiling was of a very dark color and too high to bounce the light off, then I would use the dome diffuser to bail me out, but for the most part you can create beautiful light without the diffuser.

PhotographersOnUTube is a Photography Tutorial channel on YouTube. You can find their facebook page here and YouTube channel here.

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