Flash photography is an excellent way to improve the quality of your images, especially in low-light conditions. Although cameras and their flashes are equipped with automatic exposure, the system may not give you what you expect. The flash exposure compensate (FEC), is a solution to this problem. The concept of Flash Exposure Compensation will be explored in this article.
Understanding Flash Exposure Compensation Flash exposure compensation (also known as flash exposure compensation) is a function that's commonly available in high-end cameras or flash units. This feature allows photographers to manually control flash output for optimal exposure. Use it to change the exposure of your camera, even if the auto-exposure settings are on. The goal is to stop flash from being over- or underexposed. FEC usually ranges between -3 and+3, with every increment representing an adjustment of one stop. Increase FEC and you will increase flash output. This brings more light onto the scene. Diminishing the value will reduce the light output.
Balancing Ambient and Flash Light The primary reason that photographers will use flash compensation is to adjust the exposure of their flashes in relation to ambient light. When you use the automatic flash setting, your camera might not correctly meter ambient light as well. The result is an under-exposed image. By using flash exposure compensation you can balance exposures between subject and backdrop.
When the light is low, for instance, an overpowering flash can make the subject too bright while the background appears too dark. The FEC can be reduced to allow more ambient light into the picture.
For more information on how to properly compensate for flash exposure, read the tips below:
You should know your gear: Learn about the camera menu options for flash exposure compensation and how you can access them.
Test and Practice: Spend some time experimenting with the different exposure compensation values under various lighting conditions. Use the FEC settings to adjust the balance of ambient light with flash.
Be sure to observe the results. Make test shots, and note the difference in the image when you use different FEC values. Take note of details, including the brightness of the background and subject.
You can bracket your shots if you don't know the FEC to use. By taking multiple shots with different FEC values, you will have an array of options to choose from when post processing.
Be aware of limitations. Flash exposure compensation affects only the flash output, and doesn't alter your camera exposure settings. It may be necessary to make adjustments in other exposure settings (such as the aperture or shutterspeed) for better overall control.
For photographers looking for better lighting control in their pictures, flash exposure compensation can be a useful tool. If you master this technique, and understand the principle behind it, then you will be able to achieve balanced exposures utilizing ambient light and flash. By experimenting and practicing, you can become confident about adjusting your flash to get the desired effects. Keep in mind the relation between the subject, the background and any flash limitations. After gaining experience and learning more about flash exposure compensation you will soon be creating stunning images under a wide range of lighting conditions.