My ten tips to create beautiful lighting that flatters for that perfect selfie or as a professional photographer.

This is My Ten simple tips to create beautiful lighting that flatters for professional photos or perfect selfies

1: Use natural light whenever possible.
Natural light is often the most flattering and easiest to work with. Putting your subject in the right place at the right time of day with natural light can be the softest lighting to work with, and most effective.

All natural overcast day light

2: Experiment with different times of day.
The quality of light can change significantly depending on the time of day, so try shooting at different times to see what works best for you or your subject.

3: Use reflectors or a white card to bounce light back onto the subject.
This can help fill in shadows and add dimension to the subject. Bring out a glow to the eyes and under the chin to make an image more appealing to the eye.

4: Experiment with different light sources.
In addition to natural light, you can also use artificial light sources such as studio strobes or continuous lights. Even a simple ring light can be a creative tool or a small video light will add a pop to your pictures.

5: Pay attention to the direction of the light.
Light that is coming from the side or from behind the subject can create a more dramatic effect, sometimes a bright light from behind will result in a more silhouetted looking image.

Natural light with a reflector to reduce shadows and add a catch light to the eyes

6: Use diffusers to soften the light.
This can help reduce harsh shadows and make the light more flattering to the subject. A simple white sheet over a window will give a soft touch to any image.

7: Avoid shooting directly into the sun.
This can create harsh shadows and cause lens flare and in turn make the images soft with less contrast. Though this rule isn’t always bad. It can also be creative if used in the correct environment .

Bright side light from back lighting in mid day sun

8: Use negative fill to create shadows. By placing a dark object near the subject, you can create shadows and add depth to the image.
If you have a very light room from natural light through a window or a white bedroom this idea will be great, even a dark sheet/ blind or black card will reduce some light giving more depth to a subject.

9: Experiment with different apertures. Aperture controls the amount of light that enters the camera, as well as the depth of field.
This can be found on all manual settings in camera or on smartphones. This is perfect to add a little creative look when using a low F number ..

10: Keep an eye on the colour temperature of the light. Different light sources can cast different color temperatures, which can affect the overall mood of the image. Use a colour checker or white balance tools to help ensure accurate colour. For instance house lighting and sunlight can produce a warm tone to an image.. where a window lit by indirect light or even a snow scene will have a cooler more white look..

Please remember that these are my personal tips, we all have our own ideas. There’s nothing wrong with using a bunch of the above methods and then in your preferred editing software creating something much more refined or dramatic.

Let me know what you try and how it works out for you.

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