Bouncing light helps to soften harsh light coming from a small source to spread across a large area. It is an important lighting technique that every photographer should know. It works like magic to soften hard light, and avoid producing shadows. If you want to illuminate your subject in indoor photography, you must use it, if you don't use any lighting modifier. Different photographers adopt different ways to bounce light. In this article, the top 4 best ways are shared.
How To Bounce Light In Indoor Photography?
All photographers use some kind of reflector to bounce light. Its positioning plays a very important role in photography. For example, if the subject faces the main light source at an angle, you should place the reflector at the opposite angle to achieve an even texture. You should also be careful about the size of the reflector you choose. The larger the size of the reflector, the softer the light gets. Some photographers also choose to use multiple reflectors. It helps to spread the light evenly throughout the photo. It works especially for group portraits. When you add more than one smaller reflector to click a group photo, you can illuminate the faces of all the people you want. It would not be possible if you use a single reflector. But keep in mind that the more reflectors you use, the more support you need to hold them.
Bounce the light off the ceiling
This technique particularly helps when you shoot portraits. In this technique, instead of focusing light on the subject from the front, you let it strike the ceiling and bounce down. Make sure the ceiling is not very high. If it is so, the light will not illuminate properly due to the large distance between the main light source and the ceiling. The ceiling should be white in color, or at least gray- because otherwise the color of the ceiling will be cast on your photo.
Use the floor and walls
Not only the ceiling, the floor, and walls, but even the entire room can also act as a reflector provided it is white. Suppose you are clicking portraits. Make your model sit in a white room, with white walls and flooring. Now let the light bounce off the floor and walls. You will be able to create enough lighting in this way when the main source of light is insufficient. So, whenever possible, choose a room with white walls or floor or both when you are doing indoor photography.
Use Colored Surfaces
As mentioned earlier, you should use a white or at least a gray-colored background to avoid color cast on your photos. But some photographers intentionally bounce light off a colored surface because they want to add a colored tone to the photo. You can try this trick as well. For example, a golden surface gives a warm tone. You can use that while clicking sunset photos. Some reflectors have golden and silversides. The silver side gives a cool tone. You can use colored light diffusers too.
Written By Sanga Basu, Content Writer, WPC.