Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2001/05/31

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Subject: Re: [Leica] a lunatic flash technique... try it.
From: "Ted Grant" <>
Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 20:50:39 -0700
References: <>

Johnny Deadman wrote:
>>> Anyway, now I share a technique. Everyone knows you can bounce the flash
> the ceiling, and walls to the left and right of you, but next time try
> this...  ...... fire the flash backwards.
> yeah it sounds ludicrous but if you are standing about six feet from a
> you will get a beautiful diffuse frontal lighting, real beauty shot stuff.
> You'll lose a couple of stops but most flashes are overpowered anyway, of
course everyone
> will also think you are completely off your trolley  that guy's shooting
his flash BACKWARDS!

Hi John,

I did that many years ago when we used the big wet battery Mutiblitz
strobes, big heavy mothers that packed a blast of light and it, as you say,
created the greatest light effect, soft and gentle, very beautiful for

The first time I tried it in the Chateau Laurier Hotel in Ottawa I had
someone come to me and say, "Excuse me, but unfortunately I don't think your
snaps will turn out, you had your flash pointing the wrong way."

"Oh my goodness thank you, I hadn't noticed." ;-) Then went right on
shooting while the guy kept a watchful eye on this lunatic photographer
pointing the light the wrong way.:-)

It's very interesting light and may I make a suggestion for the "flashers"
give it a try. :-) It sure beats the hell out of big black wall shadows!~

Ted Grant Photography Limited
- ----- Original Message -----
From: "" <>
To: "LUG" <>
Sent: Thursday, May 31, 2001 2:14 PM
Subject: [Leica] a lunatic flash technique... try it.

> on 5/31/01 4:35 PM, Rodgers, David at wrote:
> > You said it. I admire people who are masters with artificial light. I
> > that it very difficult. And I don't mean masters at using a dozen, but
> > a single well placed.
> actually I think it is easier to light with one well placed light plus a
> reflector than three or four or five or more.
> more light = more spill
> spill = confusion
> the light gets where you don't want it!
> often the key to lighting well is simply controlling the spill. A big room
> is better because the walls don't reflect the light where you don't want
> Moving the subject away from the back wall helps a lot too. High ceilings
> ditto. And lots of flags!
> Even so it's hard to make lots of lights look natural because we are
> basically used to a single light source: the sun
> or, rather, the sky
> In fact we really in general respond to diffuse directional light, like
> get from a window or under the leaves of a tree near a clearing. So you
> to go to a lot of trouble to get your lights diffuse, umbrellas and
> softboxes and silks and reflectors.
> But there's diffuse and diffuse. I don't think a source is truly diffuse
> unless it occupies about sixty to ninety degrees of arc as seen from the
> subject's POV. That's BIG. Picture window big.
> but hey. they already think you're nuts for using a leica.
> --
> John Brownlow

In reply to: Message from Johnny Deadman <> ([Leica] a lunatic flash technique... try it.)