Take Better Indoor Photos: Use Your Flash! Say what??

(There are affiliate links in this post; if purchases are made through these links, I do get a small portion of the revenue. I purchased this product on my own, however, and love it so I’m sharing it!)

Now that I’ve been Project Life’n it up lately, I am realizing that it is waaaaaay more fun to document the good photos! Obviously, right? I have lots of great photos of my girls from times I’ve had them model something for my blog, but for the regular happenings and occasions, I find that my photos aren’t that great. I would try so hard to get the lighting right, but with my kit lens, let’s face it… those pictures aren’t going to be awesome, and sometimes they are downright embarrassing now that I know more (though still only a little) about photography. I get good light in my little condo for maybe 20 minutes during the day, and in the girls’ bedroom. News flash: not all the fun happens in the girls room! I’ve missed several good pictures because I was too picky about light and what you hear over and over and over about good photos with a DSLR is to NEVER use your flash. Well, how about let’s break that rule and use it all the time!

Take better indoor photos with a Light Scoop

This is one of the things I asked for for Christmas this year after a recommendation by my photographer cousin Kendyl, and man, am I glad “Santa” delivered. Coming in at a very reasonable $20+shipping, it is the best rookie accessory I have for my camera (aside from my 50mm lens)! Let me show you:

So here’s the baby, asleep on the floor after she woke up at 3am begging to watch Tangled. Mike set up her bed and gave in because that is one very loud, very persistent girl at 3am. Plus, she’s spoiled rotten. When morning came around, we were all getting ready around her and she was sound asleep. Perfect to document such a funny incident! Without a flash, there wasn’t enough light for a mildly decent photo without having a suuuuper slow shutter speed, so I went to regular flash:

Photo before using Light Scoop

Awww, the sleepy baby. But the light from our dining room plus the light from the flash totally made this photo boring, no life, no color, blah.

Attach your Light Scoop to your Camera

I slipped my Professor Kobre’s Lightscoop into the hot shoe where a fancy external flash would normally sit (the light scoop is upside down in the picture so you can see the part that slides into the hot shoe), and I took the photo again, still with my wimpy little built-in-flash. Behold:

Lighting different with Light Scoop

SOOOOOOOOOOOO much better. This was totally unedited, too, and none of my camera settings were changed. There is so much more life in this one, it is more real and as if I took a piece of this morning’s memory and transplanted it into my camera’s SIM card.

Better photos with Light Scoop

And I was able to document my little Sleeping Beauty this morning without having to whine later about terrible pictures!

Document better photos with Light Scoop

Now, things to remember: This isn’t a professional external flash. While the pictures look a bazillion times better, they aren’t perfect. Take the last photo, above: While it is better then my first flash example, it is obvious a little more light would be great! I also got a new camera bag for Christmas so it has a nice little place in my bag; if your camera bag only holds your camera and lens, you might need to find a way to tote it around with you without smooshing it.

Also, this doesn’t work outside. The Light Scoop is basically a little mirror attached to a plastic scoopy thing that you put in front of your flash. The light from the flash hits the mirror, which bounces the light up to the walls and ceiling, and then around your subject; if you have light colored walls and ceilings, it will be awesome! Put this in a dark room or outside, and you have light being lost and sucked away to oblivion.

Another thing, since I still am using my flash, I still have that little wait time between shots while the flash recharges. I can’t do fast, successive shots with the scoop. But for birthdays, kids playing, funny bathtub pictures, and those other little magic moments that happen during the day, this is perfect for capturing them without obscuring them with flash-flat photos.

Don’t miss capturing moments with your family! The golden hour of light only happens twice a day, but the special times happen all day long. We’ve been so brainwashed and robot-ized into never use your flash. The truth is, you’d probably rather have a bad photo than no photo at all! Don’t let the standard handicap your picture taking- add the Light Scoop and it will be so much better :) Now, even thought these were inside photos and I used the flash, I’m still excited to put them in our Project Life books! Yay!!

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