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Welcome to the Karyn Johnson Photography blog! This blog is a well of information about all things photography and wedding! I began photographing weddings in 2011 and enjoy writing all about my wedding experiences. From pretty wedding pictures to day-of tips and tricks, you’ll find it all here!

Flashing Testing

In the photography world, November-February is considered the “off-season.” It’s the time of year when people are busier with their personal lives during the Holidays and when it’s just plain cold outside in most of the country. That doesn’t mean photographers don’t work for 4 months. There are still sessions, weddings, and events. The quantity is just significantly less.

That’s where I am right now. I’m in the off-season where work is slow. All the Arctic temperatures and snow have pushed back a lot of my sessions. Once spring rolls around though, it’s going to get crazy! Haha. I am really looking forward to that!

So during this off-season, I’ve been able to devote a lot of time to research and practice. It’s been a really interesting few months for me watching online workshops, reading blogs, and practicing on random subjects.

One such example I’m going to share with you! As I posted in January, I got a

new camera, lens, and flash

! It’s been a lot of fun using them this past month and I can’t wait to see how much improvement my images will have this year.

But flash is one of those things that a lot of photographers don’t understand and spend a lot of time struggling through. I’m very new to using off camera lighting, but I am already loving how many more options it is giving me.

The really cool thing about the modern flashes is that they are moveable. The flash can be turned and angled at various degrees. It’s really cool and makes for a lot of customization when using flash and directional light.

One evening after Matt and I finished painting, I spent some time just messing around with the flash. I wanted to see the difference the direction and angle of the flash made in each photograph.

Here are a few test shots. Forward means that the flash is directly facing the subject. Left and right mean that the flash is facing in that direction, and backward means that the flash is pointing straight behind me. I know you can do left-backward and right-backward, kind of like a southwest or northeast direction, but in this photo, I decided to just include the simple directions.

Poor Matt having to sit there baring with all the flashes. Haha. Thankfully he was preoccupied with his computer. 🙂

So the top left photo is what I typically think of when I think of flash. Really harsh light with awful shadows that’s super unflattering. However, you can tell through the progression that the light changes significantly as you move the flash around! How cool! Or at least for this photography geek… haha.

My favorite is the right at 45

° followed by backward at 45


. I’m also a fan of the left-backward at 45

° and the right-backward at 45

°, but I didn’t want to post 20+ photos of Matt sitting on our couch playing Minecraft. Haha. 9 is more than enough!

When I’ve watched wedding photographers, I see them typically using the left/right or right-backward/left-backward. Now, that completely makes sense to me because I see how the light affected the image. So helpful!

I am so excited for how much this new flash will improve my reception photos! I can hardly wait for Wes and Emma’s wedding next Saturday! Ah! Yay!!

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Meet Karyn

Hi friends! I’m Karyn a twenty-something Christian, wife, do-it-yourselfer, chocoholic, and Virginia Tech alum living in Louisville, KY. I’m a wedding photographer by day and blogger by night. You’ll find all kinds of pretty pictures, wedding tips, life updates, and crazy thoughts on this little place I call my internet home.

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