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Flash Photography Crash Course

Lesson 1 of 13

Flash Photography Crash Course Introduction

Pye Jirsa, SLR Lounge

Flash Photography Crash Course

Pye Jirsa, SLR Lounge

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Lesson Info

1. Flash Photography Crash Course Introduction
An introduction to what we’ll be discussing and who this course is designed for.

Lesson Info

Flash Photography Crash Course Introduction

Welcome to the Flash Photography crash course, I'll be honest, it is absolutely wonderful being back here on Creative live with a new course, getting to spend time with y'all or at least virtually. My name is Pi Jirsa. I am one of the founders of Lynn and Jirsa Photography, where a boutique wedding and portrait Photography studio based out of southern California. I'm also one of the co founders of SLR Lounge Photography Education and Visual Flow Presets. This course though, is all about lighting and by definition it's a crash course, which means I want to get you guys in and out of this course ready to use flash in your everyday portraiture. That's the whole goal. That's the premise to give you all the basics and to get you started. So let's talk about who this course is for Now. What I would say is that this course is designed for those that are new to flash and you have already an understanding of your camera meaning, you know, your shutter speeds, your aperture, your eye. So, you kn...

ow the basics of lighting in terms of natural light, you use natural light. You're at that place where you're ready to step beyond what natural I can give you. Now let me say, I love natural light. It's a huge part of what I do in photography. It's a huge part of everything that I shoot. But at the same time, understanding and mastering, flash opens up a world of creative possibilities that really are not possible. Otherwise the natural light is great, but we're limited in our ability to not only shoot well, we're limited to kind of the sunlight or the ambient light around us, but we're also limited in terms of times a day and how much we can modify that light with flash. None of those limitations exist. You can shoot any time of day, you can make that light look dramatic and just crazy over the top colorful. You can also use flash to simulate natural light so it really opens up a lot of possibilities on that side this course is also designed for those that want a simple approach to lighting. I'm all about taking complex subjects and making them easy to understand. That is my thing. I specialize in frameworks that make things simple. Lighting is such a deep concept though. So a lot of different courses and a lot of the ways that you learn lighting online, they can be overly complicated. What I want to do is simplified. So this is designed to kind of be your foundation and really you're stepping stone to going beyond that said, if you want to stop after this course, you totally can, you're going to finish this course knowing how to incorporate flash into your portraiture and you're gonna learn some powerful tools and some basics that can carry you a long, long way. That said when you're ready to go kind of deeper into the rabbit hole that is lighting. This course is designed to prepare you for our lighting series which is lighting one through lighting four. It's a four workshop series that helps you master the ins and outs of on camera and off camera flash. Going from the basics to advance concepts, multi point lighting, simulating natural light, everything. So this is kind of that preparatory course where if you want to go deeper, you'll be ready to dive deeper into the subject. So that's it. Introduction is done. We are ready to dive straight into this. I'm gonna make an ask of each of you. Turn off your device is turn off notifications, close down your browser, social media. I want you guys to pay attention to this video. This is a crash course like I've said, which means we're going to be going at a good pace. And yes, I'm gonna be simplifying and making things easy to understand, but there's a lot of information here. So do yourself a favor. Pay attention, take notes and be ready. Let's go ahead.

Class Description


  • Use flash to create dramatic portraits.
  • Use flash to create natural portraits.
  • Balance flash with ambient light.
  • Use and understand off-camera flash.
  • Understand off-camera flash gear and setups.


Let’s be honest, flash photography is intimidating. Many photographers never learn the power of flash because at first glance it looks complicated and overwhelming. This course is the exact opposite. In around 90 minutes, you will walk away not only understanding flash gear, but also having a simple framework to immediately begin using flash in your own work.

I’m going to show you how easy flash can be. From creating dramatic portraits straight out of camera, to using flash for a more natural and soft look. You will walk away from this course with everything you need to get started using flash. Should you choose to dive deeper down the rabbit hole of lighting, this course will also prepare you for the Lighting Series, a four workshop intensive that covers the ins and outs of location lighting for portraiture.


  • Beginners that understand their camera
  • Beginners that want to start learning flash
  • Beginners that want to learn how to use flash for portrait


LPye Jirsa is a photographer, educator, author, podcaster and lifelong learner. He has made a career out of creating frameworks that simplify complex subjects. Frameworks that have helped millions of people learn languages, creativity, photography, lighting, business, communication and even relationships.

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

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Gary Hook

Pye is a talented instructor with a wealth of knowledge. He has an excellent technique of brining out the learning points and does an excellent job at the end of the sessions through summary. He provides some handy tools to assist the beginner to get out and shooting pictures with simple, easy to remember steps, e.g. CAMP. While I am a huge fan of building a foundation of theoretical knowledge, the majority of the first 8 sessions was more on an informercial for Profoto to the point of being painful. A few examples if I may. Pye tells us he is not familiar with the Godox menu system but then sings the praises of Profoto because it is so easy to use? Mmmm, maybe if you actually understood the Godox system you would find it easier to use? When it comes to modifiers, you stress that the Profoto is so much better because of its portability even though it takes more time to set-up than the competition; however when it comes to Menu systems the GoDox is not as good because it takes more time. So one is okay even though it takes more time but one is NOT good because it takes more time? No paradox here right I appreciated his chart to demonstrate the differences between Groups and Channels; however, when using the same identifier for both, e.g. letters, it can be confusing. From my perspective identifying Groups as Teachers using a # and Channels as students using letters (A,B,C,D) would reduce the risk of confusion. Instruction 101: if you are going to demonstrate something, learn it before you take up screen time! Profoto has the most counter-intuitive number system for power. How does 9 out of 10 make one think of 50% power? Session 8 – 2 minutes of actual information crammed into 15:40! With respect to terminology, Pye asks do we really need Master/Slave? I’d ask do we really need “Air” versus “Radio”? good tips on Trouble Shooting Overall the last four sessions made the whole session worth it. The simplified and structured approach of CAMP was brought out nicely with the dramatic and natural on-location shoots. Well done

Kriss Ward

This has been one of my favorite courses so far on Creative Live. A great starting point for OCF. I really enjoy Pye's teaching methods as I have seen them on other platforms so I was excited to find this here. Not only does he explain things in digestible bites, but also his demos are helpful too! Will definitely be watching the more in depth series that follows!

Angie Martin

This is a wonderful class! I was able to apply these concepts right away for a senior portrait shoot. i was like, "Wow! Pye was right!" I have learned not to tweak 100 different things at once and get confused. His CAMP system makes SO much sense...clarifies everything. Thank you, Pye, for this. You're a wonderful teacher! Marry me! I'll wait.