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Tuesday, 22 November 2011

4 Reasons Why You Need a Reflector for a Photo Shoot - There Is More to It Than Just a Reflector

I have to admit it. I rejoice working with reflectors during my outdoor photo shoots. This is for the simple reason that it can be used in a number of different ways. It purely makes your photographic life much easier. Do you possess a reflector or maybe you are planning to buy one? Hereunder I have listed for you the basic advantages of working with a reflector when doing outdoor photo shoots.

Rhian Sugden

If you buy a 5 in 1 type of reflector you can use your reflector as a diffuser. Holding the reflector above your model you can diffuse direct sunlight into softer light. In doing so, the model's features will turn out to be more graceful and smoother. This is a vital accessory particularly when you find yourself in situations where excessive harsh light is unavoidable.

In situations where you are forced to use artificial light, a diffuser is very helpful in minimizing the ugly shadows associated with flashes.

Artificial Light

I find it annoying having to use artificial light when actually I am working outdoors. It is pointless having ample natural light all around you and you succumb to artificial light. I understand that in certain circumstances, you need that little extra light to lighten dark areas, such as below the chin,  nose and eyes.

A small reflector is all that is needed. You can take advantage of natural light by simply redirecting light to the desired areas.

Another important aspect is that you do not need to worry any more about getting extra batteries for your flash light! Power source is unlimited.

Wind Breaker

Photo shoots during windy days can be problematic. Models are most of the time drying their watery eyes and makeup has to be retouch constantly. The situation gets even worse when working on sandy beaches or dusty areas.

By strategically using a medium size reflector you can easily shield the model's face from these extreme conditions. This is very effective if you are doing portraits.


An effective way of using a reflector is by using it as a backdrop. Depending on the size of your reflector, it can block unwanted noise in the background. Again, this is very effective when doing portraiture. Referring back to the 5 in 1 reflector, the choice of background usually is gold, silver, black or white.

A reflector can be the best accessory you can carry with you during your photo shoots. Its uses are endless. To a certain extent I would prefer leaving an extra lens behind rather than a reflector. If like me, you like working with ambient light, I strongly suggest that next time you venture for your outdoor photo shoot you grab that reflector along.

Practice makes perfect but knowledge can speed up your learning process. Read and expand your knowledge about reflectors in order to ameliorate and improve your photo shoots.

Author: Michael Abela
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