In order to continue my education on photography, I saved some coppers to buy a photography accessory called “Neewer Photo Bracket Grip Holder 24″-47″—One Light Stand and Boom Arm Anchor Weights“. I know it sounds too technical. In layman terms, it’s an accessory used to support reflectors of different sizes or speedlites a.k.a.flashes.
In the world of photography, everything has to do with light. Nothing will happen without light. Light is the soul of photography—Alpha and Omega. If you want to become a decent photographer, dedicate lots of time studying light. That’s what it’s all about—the perfect illumination of the subject!
Several months ago, I purchased a reflector in an effort to enhance the quality of my pictures. Since then I’ve learned how to use the black portion of the accessory. All those pictures with a pitch black background have been created using this item.
The main use of reflectors is to create soft light by modifying the amount of light that reaches the subject being photographed. Soft light generally comes from physically large sources or modifiers—umbrellas, reflectors, walls, ceilings, overhead clouds, etc. Soft light comes from a larger source than the subject and is more complimentary to people. Soft light wraps light around the subject which helps to fill in shadows and lower contrasts.
Light modifiers are tools for controlling light, where you can get softer flattering light, or you can direct the light to fall on to specific places on the subject, or near the subject, depending on the effect you are after.
Board reflectors are common types of light modifiers. They are a flat surfact constructed to reflect or light the photographer’s subject. They are simple to use and cheap to buy. You can find them in different shapes, sizes and colors, such as silver, gold or white.
- Gold will give your photograph a warmer effect.
- Silver will bounce cool light on your subject.
- White typically softens and filters light coming through the subject; for instance, in bright sunlight, or if an area of a studio is too bright.
- Black can be used to darken certain areas of the subject.
Also known as plane reflectors, “flats” or bounce boards, this kind of reflector is located independent of a light source; the light is reflected off its surface, either to achieve a broader light source, or control shadows and highlights, or both.
Okay, I think you now have a pretty good idea of what a reflector is and how it is used to create soft light for great photographs. Now it’s time to show you how you can place reflectors in the right spot without having to use a person to assist you in your photography sessions. Here we go.
This is a black round 33″ reflector mounted on the Neewer stand and arm supporter. The arm is very flexible and will help you place the reflector just about anywhere you want for a pleasing photograph.
Photograph by ©Omar Upegui R.
The base of the stand can be opened or closed depending on your needs. With the adjustment of a control screw, you can balance the stand during a windy day when you are shooting outdoors. If the wind is too strong, you can place small bags of sand on the bottom of the device for greater stability.
Good Day and Happy Shooting!