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Mastering TTL Flash

Lesson 3 of 13

10:30 am - TTL Metering & High Speed Sync

Mike Fulton and Cody Clinton

Mastering TTL Flash

Mike Fulton and Cody Clinton

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Lesson Info

3. 10:30 am - TTL Metering & High Speed Sync

Lesson Info

10:30 am - TTL Metering & High Speed Sync

What's the gold CTO metering before break? We were talking about what is the goal, and we talked about with the 1 32nd power pre flash and all that stuff. Our goal is to make basically a great card. The flash of the camera wants to expose properly as a great card because it's unknown. Sometimes you have something very light, something very dark. If you get a great card, that's probably pretty good exposure across the board in a scientific method. So that's the ultimate goal. A great of TT Oh, now we get technical and it's actually a percentage of reflective light that comes back. But that's we're not really needed for you to understand how it works. The whole goal is it tries to make an 18% great card so it can come tricky, especially if you're photographing something that's predominately dark, are predominantly light, like a wedding gown that's predominately white and taking a photograph of the back of her gown where it's laced up and it just all white or Tuck's. It's all black, and y...

ou're taking a picture of the boot near it can really mess up the T TL exposure now some of the newer models of cameras, especially the new versions of Cannon. They actually have a new brand new sensor that's just four tt l'm eatery. It's a lot of the issues that I'm talking about right now have really been solved with modern technology, so it's getting better and better and better. And the benefit is no matter if you're Canon, Nikon or whatever. If one company comes out with, you know, down the road, the other companies are coming out with it, too. So it's great for all of us photographers. No matter what brand we have, this technology keeps getting better. But just for a little example. Course, this is not a real example. Photoshopped. It just showed. This is what the photograph on the left is. What t t. L might want to do because it meters on this black tux and that pre flash at 1 32nd comes back, bounces off the black tux comes back through the lens, and it's say there is not enough light here for an 18% great, its way under exposed amount of light coming back. So it's gonna actually overexpose that flash. It's going to say I need to make Mawr power to make that black tuck a gray because it wants that 18% gray. The same thing goes with White Gang. As I mentioned earlier, it's gonna meet her off the back of that gang that's pure white. It's gonna come back and say, Holy cow, there's way too much light here. I gotta under expose this to make that white a great So you is the photographer. Need to know about these possible issues and you can adjust it with your flash compensation. So in this case, I would actually under expose my flash compensation to bring the black back to black and not great, because it's gonna put out too much life in the white gown I'd want to over expose to make that what it wants to under exposing make gray to make it appear white. That is some of the big faults I would say a T t l or some issues that you come up with. Now, if you have half and half or a mixture the bride in a white gown and the groom in the black talks, it's pretty much gonna make a nice balance. But again, it goes. Depends on your meter remote of your camera. And we're gonna get in that a little bit later too. The teacher is not right for everyone. Especially again. If you have been around a while and you've learned the traditional methods, a lot of this that we're talking about could be very complicated. Or you're gonna be locked in your mind and just say it's details. A useless tool. There's no useless tool in photography. And I want people understand that if you limit yourself to the tools that are given to you by your camera, your flash or anything else, you're only limiting your business and your art. So when you see these tools, maybe sometimes this shot might not be best for T. T. L. Maybe you could go over the mantle, but for us, if you understand the failures and a sense of the weak points of detail, you can easily adjust and correct it and you move on. You never have just it just happens that fast. So what flash systems do we use again? We already talked about batter. Power will kind of pick it up a little bit for us. We used the external battery packs a cannon. They're the CP three CP four, which is the modern one again. The nice thing about it. You have a little tray that pops out and it holds eight double A batteries. And again, as I mentioned before break. The beauty of that is you can get double A batteries anywhere, lots of times. Lithium is. We try not to use lithium batteries. Maybe we have his back up. But there's several things they get really, really hot, and we're in a very hot climate. So those air in a hot climate lithium is probably not the best, because it literally can melt your flat from inside out. If you use that flash a lot, we try to stay away from him. Now, when we're given battery advice, we rarely tell people that they have to go and buy something new. Typically, a lot of people already have a battery pack. Maybe they have some sort of proprietary pack that it doesn't hold batteries, but it's just like a block battery pack. Tempting so the the disadvantage in my mind to having one of those is typically they'll use some sort of proprietary charging cord. Typically, they will take a long time to charge, and eventually you're going to find yourself on location and you're charging cords at home and the batteries in your bag, and it's basically just a useless brick. The advantage to using these is like Mike said. They used double A batteries. You could go to any 7 11 and WalMart and pop regular alkaline batteries in it. If you forget your rechargeable. One of the disadvantages is they really don't hold as much power as much juice as the other ones do. They probably don't, um, refresh your flash as fast. But that to us is minimal. When it comes to having a bad impact, it works. Every time is the whole point of this is your very portable. You're very light, and you could go anywhere in the world with you. It's important toe have this this function and for not gone, they have the same basic battery pack. Slide comes out and you'll be able to use it with your 900 Siri's. So look for these. There are some off brands or some ones that are made overseas. You can use those as well to just It's extremely important. If you're gonna do teach Yale Toe have one of these packs. If you only have one. Put it on your wildest your slave unit, because that's the one you can't really go over to and change the batteries out. When you in the middle of the session, you can always have extra batteries in your back pocket, camera back on your shoulder and change out your master. But you can't really go over there to the slave, and that's the one that's trying to see here. All information. Send the pre flash out. That's the one that's really the slight flash is going to eat up more battery power than your master. So if you only have one, put it on your slave flashes. Normally, we would have won with just literally Velcro it right to the light stand. It has a little little You can see this little strapped right here, and we just put it right on the light stand. It's very light, very easy and very simple to use again. We talked about the mah hah charger already. All right, kind of a bad photo apologized, but high speed sink to me this is the greatest advantage of using a cannon to Canon, Nikon, Nikon, Sona, Sona, Whatever we talked about. Flash system, because high speed ST allows pleat freedom for you as an artist where if you're a manual shooter without high speed, sink your limited to the equipment that you use and there's other wrong with that, because sometimes maybe I do want F 11 or F 16 with everything and focused. But maybe I don't want everything and focus in my background, and I want that. Shall it up field high speed Think allows us to do that, and it's Onley because you're strove. The fact that these flashes could do which were fixing explain. You can't get this. What is high speeds? Think you ask? Well, I'm glad you asked. Let me explain it to you. I like to give a visual demonstration of what exactly high speed sink is. Some people understand, so people don't Well, if you don't, here's your opportunity to learn. All right when you talk about flash photography there, but are you tell about any photography with the SLR. Everybody realizes you have two curtains, basically your first curtain in the second curtain, so As I click the shutter and regular photography, I click it. First curtain opens light, exposing my image. Second curtain closes, gets my proper exposure. Okay, now, when you start talking about flash photography, click the shutter. First curtain opens flash fires. Second curtain closes, that's all Great. Now, when you start time with these modern cameras that we have now they have very high shutter speeds. Someone go up to 1 8/1000 of a second and it becomes physically impossible to open and close it in 18 thousands of a second. So basically what the engineers have done is as the first year and opens, the second curtain starts to close immediately, and so it exposes a slit up your sensor. That's that's gonna be a good quote later. So that becomes a problem when you're talking about flash photography. Because as your first curtain opens second current starts to close flash fires, I'm gonna get a properly exposed band on the top of my image. On the bottom. I have a black bar. I'm sure everybody has seen something like that that happens when you exceed your flash sync speed, and typically that something happens with studio lights. Um, because studio lights give just one single burst. Now, when you talk about thes speed lights, speed lights, combat that problem by as the first current opens these flash and strobing effect. So they're gonna go pop, pop, pop, pop pop up all the way up your sensor, giving you proper exposure. Okay, so again, to the human, I don't. It looks like one giant flash burst. It happened so fast that it just looked like 11 fire. But if you slow down, you would actually see those multiple fires. And again, this is Onley, something you can do with speed lights. You cannot do these with regular studio strobes because again they give you just that. Single burst residues give you multiple pops. So let's let's talk about that a little bit. So if you have regular under your flashing speed and H cameras a little different for the general part. If you have a five d version for Canon, it's usually right around 1 2/100 of a second. Most night cons right around 1 2/50 of a second. But if you have to stay below that for your flash to expose in the image. Otherwise, if you get above it, it will expose the top. And he says that second curtains and closed and get the black bar at the bottom. When you push high speed sink, it puts it into that pulsing effect that strobing effect. So you're not gonna have any black bar, but because you're doing multiple flash bursts instead of one giant big flash. First, you kind of lose a little bit of power. And then the faster your shutter speed goes, the tinier that slid up your sensor had a wink at you. Yes, the tiny that slit is so it's forcing that light through that little bitty opening, so you lose even more power. So if I'm lighting one of you guys and I have a light stand right here at full power, Perfect. Very nice at full power at one thousands of 1 1002nd I might have to have it here, and it won 8000 2nd I have to have it right on top of you because that slit is getting so small that you're losing the distance a lot because it's forcing that light through that tiny little opening between two curtains. Does that make sense? Why that happens also. So you're losing battery power. Another reason why we have to have that battery that we talked about charge or the external battery pack. So what we do is lots of times we'll shoot. We have high speed seeing turned on all the time. Ah, Vantage Nikon, I really feel you Nikon users, is that it's a functionality in the camera settings. The body itself. This is an old Nikon body, but it's a pretty much the same. You go what I call the pencil menu for your not gon users. In there, you'll have your flash settings and you'll see at the top it says 1 to 50th or a white 13 a U. That is what is technically high speed sink for Nikon. You said it, and you can forget about. You don't have to worry about it again, typically with high speed sink. When it's turned on, you never know. It's there, your flashes going to sink all the way down to bulb all the way up to 1 200 I'll upto 1 and it's seamless. You'll never notice it. It's only what it when it's turned off that you notice it's off because it's going to stop your shutter at 1 or 1 to 50 of a second and give you that burst at that rate. So, as Mike said, I really feel that not gun kind of has an advantage. You said it in your body. You said it once, and you don't ever have to revisit it with cannon. It is a functionality of the flash, and you have to set it on the flash every time you change. The batteries are the flash has been off for a while, and as candy users even even bites us to the backside, sometimes we'll be on our beach. Will be shooting, were thinking where it won 2002nd to 8, with lots of times will shoot a Navy mode, a mode which will get into later. So we're controlling the depth of field were talking about how much depth of field we have, so we'll set our F stop 28 or three to something that's wide open. So we have that shallow depth of field and we forget to hit that little high speed sync button on our back of our master flash. Instead of being at one to thousands of a second, it drops out of 1 2/100 of a second. And by the time we take 34 shots, we look at the back of the LCD and everything's pure white. Just way too much light in there usually doesn't happen, icon people. But it's gonna definitely happen to canon people. So anyone that shoots canon and some other flashes, you have to get used to making sure your high speed sink is turned on. Turn it on and forget about it. You don't need to worry about it again, but every time you turn on your flash and make sure it's set, if you're high speed sink is a functionality of your flash. And that goes back to the question we had earlier about asking is a pop up flash could be a master, and I said 70 is a master, but it's not a high can't do high speed sink. This is why, because it's not a functionality of the body without pop up flashes in the body, so you can't set high speed sink to it. So hopefully bill change some of the technology in the future, and it will. But right now I feel it's a It's a definitely advantage Nikon in this area, the question I have, especially as you guys were talking about, like shooting on a beach and stuff like that when you're in full sunlight, Is that going to affect the communication? Since it's using the flash and stuff like 2000 of the second or fourth as long as a zlotys your flash, your master slave flash can communicate with each other, They're seeing the flash pulses that we talked about, you considered any camera, and it's not gonna make any difference. The only problem is, the faster your shutter speed goes, the closer you're gonna have to have that slave flash to your subject because you're gonna It's not necessarily losing power, but because of what we talked about. The tiny little split between the two curtains you're not gonna see is much like what about the distance between your master and your slave? Because sometimes I'll shoot down the beach, and I'm like, way far away, because I'm using my, uh, my toll photo to get that compression. So generally we've gotten in the desert of Arizona. When we've shot events, we've got 50 feet of line of sight. If you get beyond 50 feet, especially during the day, you're gonna have some issues. If your solo shooter, you're gonna have more issues because you have to fine tune what we talked about turning that master flash flash, too, to the party receives on the slave. But we 30 40 feet. You easily can do beyond that. And we don't like to tell you when you have to buy any radio transmitting devices or anything else. But if you're gonna shoot more in that, that's where radio transmitting device. Just come in play. And they're several out there that that allow high speed sink to work with it. But for the most part, well, for 10 15 almost 10 years, Cody and I just did this line of sight and were on the beach, and we did everything else way. Usually you shoot a 16 35 and 7200 so it can be done. It just is easier with two people who know. But But again, you find yourself on a beach or somebody long telephoto lens. Make sure you have direct communication with your slave flash and save your go to shoot portrait mode. Something like this. Sometimes your lens can block that makes you 27 200. So you have a good direct line of sight of nothing like a lens hood or something is blocking the view that makes sense, but the lens that's a big one that we find problems with. Sometimes you have to turn that camera, I guess, upside down in a sense, sideways in the wrong direction so that Flash has a better communication with your slave flashing. It's on that side, all right. So perfect example is this is a wedding image and we enjoy this. This is the advantage of high speed sink. This is why we enjoy this. When I've talked about how using TT on high speed think allows you to be the artist, you could look at the groom. He's got a little softness to it. If you know this couple, you'll know who the groom is. But the image is all about the bride. She's in focus. It's all about her. This is what high seas high speed sink does, so we can actually set our depth of field in our camera and then I'll still have. Even if we're above that flashing speed, we still can actually sink our flashes and light up everything. And so we can actually take one image here where he's soft, maybe it for five or 56 And then we can actually just take another image of 11 where everything is in focus and we can actually figure out which one we want to give our clients when we're back in the studio. And they literally could be done that fast because again, you're you're giving up some of the freedom which is so hard for so many photographers have been in the business for a long time. Don't give up anything, But if you give up, you understand this and give up some of the freedom and allow the computer in the camera, the flash to do it, which is really, really smart. You can get these shots of very fast and very efficient. So basically, with this we have two lights. We have one light that's right off to the side, one like right off side, through the through the fence, right here, lighting up the bride in her hand. Then we have one life just to the right of the camera that's actually hitting her shoulder in the side of her face and then going back and lighting up the group. But because the distance the subject, they're both out putting the same amount of light both flashes. But because the distance the subject is farther for the groom, that light fades off and it's softer on him than the light that's on the bride. It's coming through the gate that's closer to her. Does that make sense? So our ratio, in a sense, is you can call it Whatever you want is the distance to subject. We know that that light's gonna be softer on him. We want it to be softer because it's not about him. This image and then the high speed sink allows us to get that shallow depth of field and the TT elders all the meter and force so literally we would take one shot. With this set up, we would look at the back of the LCD with their eyeballs and look the light. If it's not bright enough, we can raise the power to bright. We lower the power and take another shot. You get it, you move to the next location. It's that fast and that easy, so I don't have to go back in a light meter. The groom in the back. I don't have to like me to her. I literally can just pose them the way I want completely talking, interacting with them and allowing the camera to do the work. For me, that makes sense. What about the distance of subject? So let's talk about that a little bit when you come up here real quick because I don't want to get off their cameras won't pick us up so much if you stand right there and we have these two flashes on you and Cody's in the middle photographing you the same distances subject you're going to get pretty much sandwich light will be flat line across the board, kind of boring. Now you look at that image and you say I want a little brighter light. We can actually just move this light closer to you, not changing any camera settings, any power outings or anything, Everything they're saying now, this because this subject this your subjects close to this flat this is gonna be my main lightning. This will be my feel like it's that simple. And that's exactly what we did on this image. So let me reiterate, this is basically how we use ratios. We don't use the ratio function in our in our cannon flash, because when we if you try to use that, you got your A and B after set one of these just a one to be that I have a turn back here. Turn ratios on. I got a to B 12 to 1, and during that time, I spent a lot of time doing this. And figure out is this Is this be we used to do that we spray painted are flash is different colors. Orange was always a green was always be And then you get confused and again you can do it. And even when knock on in the new 600 system from Canon, they simplify that I think in 600 you have the ABC groups and you can easily see it. But then you still have to figure out which ones at which ones be. It's so much easier putting everything on the same power And if you have the room, just use your distance is subject to make those ratios because it's visual and there's no mathematics involved whatsoever. Let me finish what I was saying. So basically, I in the way we use ratios is we don't put anything on a different channel. No way, No days, no bees. Everything's on town. One group. Everything's the same. So again as this flash does. Marco, who's out there? These flashed a polo. Here we are. It doesn't differentiate between one. Flash to flashes are flashes. It sees that amount of light, and it commands them both to give the same amount of power because it doesn't know there's to just know it just sees the combined light, and it tells them to give. I said amount of power. So it tells both them to give the same output of light. So the way we adjust our ratios, just like Mike said, we'll move this one closer. It's all of a sudden that's your main and this is your field. It's that simple. We don't worry about a to B B B Day. This made us feel which isn't back further. That's May and that's Felix is closer. If you want hair lights since the cameras basis, if you want hairline that this is main. I could move here light in a little closer because I like a real strong hairline. Same channel. This was gonna be a lot brighter. Give that nice, sharp rim light. There's your main Thank you. Bye. Yeah, thank you. You get my same name, so get used to it. But it's that easy. You don't need to over analyze this. And I came from pure manual light meter world and it works and it's effective and it's great. And if that's what you use it, more power to you. It's a wonderful system. But to me, once I allowed my brain to reboot and realize this is so simplistic and kind of what you were saying. You have to trust it and you're not there that trust stages like a brand new relationship. You hadn't built the trust yet. Once you build that trust, this is so, so simple. It's so reliable and so easy and then again allows you to shoot at any camera setting you want with high speed sink. And to me, that's the greatest advantage. This is why we chose this method over any other method years ago is because now we can blur that chemical plant in the background, weaken, blur that seaweed that's on the brown beach weaken blur all the trash. It's floated up on our beach because we're in the very back of the Gulf of Mexico. We couldn't do that any other way. And so it wasn't really a Well, this is neat. We weren't taught this way. Originally, it was a This is a necessity, and this is what's gonna look great for our clients and for us as the artist we like just look. And so we went with it. And then we found out the problems and we try to correct them. And for us, the distance. The subject is so so simple. So when you're out of the wedding, you're out having kid running around in a park or you have a engagement session or senior session. Whatever. You can easily adjust and make manual ratios just by moving these light six backwards and forwards from the people that makes it. So Here's some other shots. Very simple, but if you notice this is an older image. We like to use old images because I want to show, especially the newbies. You don't need the best gear out there to make great images. Of course, if you want about it, that's great. We used to have the best gear as soon as it came out we had to buy. And then we actually got a business and we had to pay bills to pay rent. And we had to pay all this other stuff like, You know what? I could probably just keep this camera for another cycle till the other ones come out for another 10 years. Exactly. And that's where we are now. So we like to use these older images to show you that you can get great images. If you understand the concept, it's not necessarily all about the gear. You don't have the latest and greatest Sure there's advantages to the latest and greatest. But if you're getting by with what you have and you know how to use it, you're gonna make money with it. So here it is full some worst case scenario. 12 o'clock in the afternoon, 12 30 on the beach, down in Florida, we push that shutter speed to the very maximum we could 18 thousands of a second. We're stopping 1/3 under exposed on our camera, and that helps bring in the blue sky, which is where we're going to go next with our explanation of our style. And our flash was at plus three, which is the maximum power that your flashes going output. So this is the worst case scenario. You get in images in full sun, you can do this, and the beauty is that shallow depth of field it gets that softness it gets, and I didn't even mention one advantage of high speed sink is when you do that pull system. Instead of one big flash burst, those multiple little flash burst on a minute level. It makes a softer light. It's a little diffuser in itself, built into it. There's lots of times in situations like this you don't want a diffuser. You can't use a diffuser. If you put a soft box over this, you're losing a stop of life. So im already plus three. I can't lose any more, like, so that high speed sink really helps make a little softer light as well, so it allows you to not have to carry because almost every image you see here is just pure flash. No diffuser, no umbrella. Now we do have some diffusers that we use, and we're getting that later. Especially like in receptions or nighttime shooting with a little dark, and you need to spread the light more. But for this, when we're outside, there's no diffusers. Here's another one. This is a minute maid park where the Astros play and you can see it's 1/6 out of 1600 a second at 3.2. It's a fisheye. So basically the flashes coming in from the shout the shadow side left to right. That shadow you see from the image is actually made by the flash. So we actually incorporated the direction of the sun, the light patterns that are already naturally made there, and we copy that with our flash. So the viewer, when they looked at it, he would also natural. If you go opposite against that, lots of times people going to say I don't know what there is about this image or something, I just don't like because the human mind is not used to seeing these conflicting shadows, and it works. Sometimes there's some amazing artists that do that, but if you go with the light patterns, it makes the image a lot stronger. So this is one artificial light. You see it on him, and we're 1600 sex. So we're way above the flashing speed and were able to get that look what we want and be able to set our cameras that anything we want is the artist that we want to be a question. Yes, Micah, Sparse. The flesh is concerned most of the times on the flashes. They go from 28 to 105 Now about the zoom zoom feature. All right, so now with the zoom feature, are you allowing the camera to adjust or are you doing that in manual? On the last picture of the bride on the beach was the zoom feature Automatic A. Was that set on manual? Generally are zoom. Now this is changing with some new technologies, but generally across the board you have in your flashes, the older flashes have a zoom from 24 to 105 actually goes down to 14 to 105 and think about it is a millimeter of your lands. 14 millimeters of light exposes really, really wide at 105 it's just like his telephoto lens. It's actually a little bit tighter now. The newer flashes, like six hundreds in the nine hundreds, will actually go to 200 so they're actually even get a little tighter. So it's kind of like a snoot that's new, basically tightens the band already built into your flash, and we have some slides. We'll explain later on. There's pros and cons to it. With this. It's why we're probably 24. No, no tighter than 50. Because if we got tighter, the light on her feet would disappear so she would be dark from waist down from thigh down. If we really tightened up, that's no. I feel normal. When he does this. That's what's really scary. So if she was dark from waist down, we know he'd had the zoom feature set onto a tighter, tighter band. So we left it open and again. This is changing, but the vast majority of equipment you have to physically go over to your wireless slave unit and adjust the slave on that flash manually. There's another good quote there. So So some of the newer technology. You can actually control that from your cameras Well or from the radio transmitting device. But generally speaking, probably the majority people watching and probably you guys, you have to manually go over and adjust it on your flash itself. I have a question about how you guys meter. This is coming from a person that uses manual mode all the time. So I mean, when you guys were a Navy mode, do you like, How do you point the camera? If you point out addresses, it goes for shadow or the background or, you know, what have you We're still manually exposing all our images. We're just used a Navy, which is a mode for Nikon to get us there faster. We're gonna explain that in a second what we could go into it now if you want, but we're still manually exposed. We're just using, like, said, the A mode to get us in the ball park, so to say in that area faster so you can meet her on anything you want. For example, Cody uses of alloted, which is matrix metering for night gone, so he takes in everything in the image. I use spot metering I learned on spot metering. This is one thing as a lot of people that can't stand t tl. They say they hate TL because they learn the manual way. They just won't move into the new technology that I seem to not want to move away from spot metering because that's what I learned. Old Dog doesn't wanna learn new tricks in that area. It both works as long as you understand how that metering mode works. So for me on the spot meter, I would meet her right on her nose. I don't care who it is, it's plus between being an old law enforcement officer. It's almost like me firing a gun. It's my centrepoint. It's my target. It's what I aim for, and I meet around on their nose because the person is what I want to be properly exposed and also doesn't matter what color skin they have. Whatever else a meter on the nose, it's usually works. Cody can take a value to be can take in the whole frame, and he uses the 16 35 a lot more than I do. I do. So he's a lot wider. He takes in the whole frame, but you can still do the exact same shot. But as long as you understand how the media works, well, me since I'm not taking in the sun or the brightness of the background, maybe I could enter expose more where Cody takes in the brightness. Maybe he can under exposes much, but we're still going to get the exact same exposure way. Reiterate that, say, this is our life source. This is our subject. If this is me shooting this which which this was, and I can tell also by the exposure amount of exposure conversation, we notice we have the flash conversations. That plus three. That means we're asking the slash to give us as much power as it can. It's given us all it can give. Okay, so in a value to I'm looking at the entire scene, so I have her. She's a white dress that's pretty bright and also have the sky, which pretty right? A lot of my images I might even have the sun in the image back there, and that plays a huge part of that equation because that's in that evaluative equation. It's going to see that sun as part of the light, which is extremely bright. So when I goto under exposed to dark and must guys too make everything darker, I'm not gonna be ableto under expose as much as, say, Mike will cause Mike his exposure. He's only looking to just her face so he can he can in his body, he can under expose by a full three stops, maybe to get the same image that I will get by only under exposing by one and 1/3. Because again, I'm looking at the sky and everything else I start off a lot brighter. You're gonna because what you're gonna do you gonna find yourself in a point where you don't have enough power from these flashes. I'm asking them to give all the power that can, and I can't get anymore. So if I was in evaluative looking at everything and I tried to under exposed by full three stops, he's gonna be very dark in this flash is not gonna build strong enough to light her up, whereas my could could could meet her on just her face and then exposed by a full three stops, which isn't as much as three stops, including the sun and this guy and everything else. But I'm money that upper did that. Did that chemical school exposure kind of determined. How How are you figured out How much flash you need? I mean, did you were gonna get there in just seconds? That's a great question. But your lead, we need to work better because we have a few slides more, and then we'll be on that. So long as we know it was almost that we're gonna get into that. Exactly. And that's basically our style. We Onley changed two things. We had just our exposure compensation first, which is going to get the background and then we just a flash compensation to get the foreground, which is your person, and we're gonna show some examples of that by the end of the segment. So again, um, master slave, the neat thing about the new six hundreds is you can actually change the colors. They have two different colors, so you can put your master on one color in your slaves on another color, which is kind of cool if you have certain flashes there, dedicated just to that. For the older versions, you have the 5 80 ones here. They just have the master slave function at the bottom for the 5 82 is the one on the right. You have to hold down the zoom button For Nikon. It's, um, very, very similar. You have Nike. The nine hundreds actually have just the switch. It goes from master slave. It's very similar. 800. You have to go the menu system. It's a little more complicated, but that is amazing. Flash for the Nikon Nikon system, Um, and let me back up a little bit. Your flashes. Some flashes of the Nikon canon system can only be a slave can only be your wireless. Some could be master or slaves for Canon your 5 50 Your 5 81 version 5 82 version in the new 600 can be master or slaves. For Nikon, you have your eight hundreds. Well, the newer seven hundreds conduce both or the 900 Siri's. Those could be master or slave For Canon. Your four twenties and four thirties can only be a slave and for night kind of the 600 it could only be a slave. Now they're cheaper, the six hundreds in the four twenties and four thirties or cheaper than less powerful, which I have a problem with because of those bright days we're going to use much power is possible. And then, finally, the worst thing I find with him, they do not allow an external battery pack. Plug in that that plug that you plug in the external better pack. Those lower flashes do not allow that to be plugged in. So already talked about how powerful flat battery power is. Those don't allow it. If you're looking at buying another flash, I suggest spending an extra $100 getting them a powerful top of the line flash, because it's really going to help you in the long run. Plus, if you're going to do weddings or anything else, it's a better backup system, and you really need a backup system. If you If you learn to use flash because if you don't have one, it really contented, especially those dark churches bride coming down down the aisle of or the family. I want to go over that real quick with you just some of the flash systems that are master and slave. And if you have any more question, you can ask us. And again we talked about this. That's the area on the flashes on the slide that receives the signal. So for you guys were having problems with the mashed flat where it's receiving. This is usually the biggest problem. Most people don't realize the communication comes from the flat tube that's singing it, and those parts that circled is what's receiving the signal. And then, finally, you have to be on the same channel. We had brought this up yet, but all flashes, for the most part, have four channels built into him, and your master slaves have to be on the exact same channel. So if their own Channel one your master's in general on your slate has to be on Channel one, your masters on Channel three, your slave has to be on Channel three for them. Communicate. Advantage of that is, if you're in a wedding and someone there locally has a camera, and there on Channel one, you can change it to Channel three or Channel four so they won't. Basically we call steal your thunder flash when you need it to, And then when you need the flash, it won't have the batter. The capacitors will be charged up, so make sure they're on the same channel. That's another big failure that a lot of people don't realize needs to happen. They didn't happen. They can't figure out why. It's up communicating, and they forgot that. Change the channel two weeks before, and they haven't changed it back. So make sure your channels are on the same. All right, kind of go through in the nine hundreds. I'm kind of flying through some of this stuff, but if we have any questions will help you out. It's just basically explaining how we do it, but this is a big part I wanted to spend some time on. We mentioned earlier that we normally are. Master Flash is set to only be a wireless transmitter, and the reason why we do that It's several reasons one we talked about earlier, how that Master Flash can actually turn to flash head to face the slave that really gives you better line of sight communication where the wireless transmitters don't have that opportunity or the pop up flashes can do that, but to to set that way. If you could kind of see on the slides in the 1st 1 on the left, you see three little light beams that poke out of the flash on the LCD district display and on the left, there, going on the right there, going the left of their the right. They're going. My dyslexia is hitting. That's how you show. That's the visual arts saying that either this one, I'm exposing not only sending the signal but also expose it in the image. And with those three little light beams gone, this one is only sending the signal. It's a wireless transmitter. So again, by the fault you're gonna have three. The lightwaves coming out of the silhouette on the back of your camera. By default. These will be on, and you can scroll through your zoom feature for canon or canon until these air gone, and then it's gonna have a little lightning bolt down here, which means it's only transmitting. It will not be firing the flash for Nikon. When you get your system in manual, I mean in master mode, you'll have in the back of your your LCD. You'll have master than ABC group in your master, the M. You'll hit the button. Still, it says, Dash, dash, dash. And again, it's kind of difficult to talk about a show here in the workshop. And for people that are viewing, I just want you to know this is a feature. It's capable if you're interested in region manual and a truly help shot a lot. And tomorrow, maybe even this afternoon. But definitely before the program is over, we're gonna show you how powerful like having their flash turned on and then turning it all and how dramatic it can make your images just for that one little switch and doing nothing else. One last thing, this flash is turned off. If you you probably can't see, I'm gonna ask you to. But I do have the silhouette of the flash. I do not have the three little light waves coming in, but I just have to zigzag. So this slash is turned off, only to transmit. So just to reiterate, as I click the shutter, it's still fires. Okay, that's the communication. That's it saying Marco, who's out there? Polo Harry M. Give me this man light that is not going to expose your image. Not gonna exposure milliseconds before your curtains open up to the exposure happens. Even though this flash is turned off, it's still going to fire. Is that is your communication? That's how fast that's happening. And we always get that question or concern in our workshops. People say I turn this off. Why is because that's the Marco that's sending out the communications? So do a quick test. Set the light up on the side. Take a shot. If this your flash on your master is is exposing, you're gonna pretty flat lip like it's not in there. And if it's working, you won't have any flash. Now, One word of warning If you're not using master slave functionality, you're not using a slave flash sometime, especially for your wedding shooters. Turn the flash on your camera from the master feature off where it's just the flash on your camera because it will happen. And it happened to me when you have a bride and groom coming down or you're taking photos. A little grandma being escorted down the aisle and you just got back finishing, photographing the bride of the groom with some off camera lighting. And you come out here to get the family coming down the aisle and you start shooting you like these are gonna be great photos going on. You can see if you can see it. Fine. So you know what's going off about the third family member that comes down? You realize my flashes not exposing in my image at all. And all my images are black because there's no light and you can't ask Graham Ball that just walked down with a walker to come back down the aisle. So when you're not using the master slave feature turned them master flash to where it's just a regular flash and you'll be fine because this setting will come back to bite you like that lots of times a little sample that top one is with the flash on the camera. We turned it off and just use off camera lighting. Very simple. Same shot

Class Description

Through-the-lens flash (TTL) is a powerful tool for every successful photographer — but it’s also an intimidating system if you don’t know how to use it correctly. Join creativeLIVE for a two-day workshop on simple, effective ways for using TTL and off camera flash to create studio lighting in any environment.

Veteran photographers Mike Fulton and Cody Clinton will teach you what TTL is, how a wireless flash works, and walk you through a wide variety of flash techniques. After two days of hands-on instruction, you’ll understand the science of metered light, how to troubleshoot both manual and TTL metering, and the basic concepts of “flash placement.”

This course will equip you with the knowledge and skills necessary to elevate your on-location photography skills, transforming every location into a studio.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Light Patterns.pdf

Lighting Diagrams.pdf

Off Camera Flash_ TTL Metering.pdf

The Basics - Why the TriCoast Method.pdf

Understanding High Speed Sync.pdf

Wireless Shooting.pdf

bonus material with enrollment

TriCoast Resource Guide.pdf

What is TTL.pdf

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

Related Classes


On the Mark Photography

[From intermediate hobbiest with moderate number of paid shoots]. I took the class because I knew nothing more about flash photography than slapping the flash on top of the camera, turning it on, and taking my chances. I could not have purchased a better class. Mike and Cody covered so much in such a clear way and with such great examples. Especially helpful are the shooting sessions where they work through the lighting situations, incorporating what is possible to do and what the client might want. I so appreciate their willingness to share what they do and how they do it. I now know some direction to take and what I need to acquire minimally to apply this to my work. Thank you!


Great experience and partially because of toned down Mike. I heard very few utterance of the word “idiot”. It is apparent that Mike loves to talk and is in a habit of repeating same thing again and again but I did see a better Mike and much useful content, all credit goes to you sir. Finally, a suggestion let Code talk when he holds the fort. He being behind the camera should get a chance to describe his vision. All in all very useful course and well executed. Thanks Mike & Code.

Rebecca Chapman

What a phenomenal class. I have learned so much. Not only did I learn how to master TTL but I feel confident in the science behind it. This allows for great on-the-spot problem solving. Great job, guys! Thanks for a great - and fun - class.