As many of you know, I’m currently teaching an off-camera flash (OCF) course. While I’m a family and wedding photographer, probably about 40% of my actual income and time is spent teaching others to advance in their own photography journeys. I’m doing a quick blog post today to answer some FAQ’s I get about OCF.
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Is it expensive to get the right gear?
No! I actually shoot mostly off brand, using Godox flashes and triggers. I personally shoot with the Godox v860iii and the x2t trigger. This together is less than $300 (and if you find an older version like the Godox v860ii or a less powerful flash like the Godox tt685, you can shave another $50-$60 off that price). My light stand is about $20, my soft box umbrella is around $40, and the piece that holds them together (flash umbrella mount) is only $10. So all in, you’re looking at about $310 if you don’t have ANYTHING already. A great place to shop for deals on equipment is HERE.
Is it hard to learn?
If you’re searching around on YouTube, it can be. There’s about 70% of information you need to know about your flash and about 30% you don’t – unless you want to get really technical and start doing multi-flash set ups etc. Doing an online course designed specifically for it would be best. Mine only runs in January and November, but I do have a waitlist HERE. I would say the learning curve is similar to learning to shoot with your camera in manual mode, but by the end of the first week, lots of my students are creating realistic window light, and by the end of week two, they’re tricking me as to which is window and which is flash in their images.
Do you always use flash indoors?
No, but I do about 70% of the time with my personal work and about 90% of the time with client work. Once you can control your own light perfectly, it’s really hard to go back. Plus, I can have a window wherever I want, even after dark!
Do you use flash outdoors?
Yes! But usually with creative shots, weddings, and couples. I do still do the majority of my family photography with natural light so I can run after the kiddos as I don’t have a designated lighting assistant to follow me around with it.