At the beginning of the century, I formulated a “strafe blur” technique. In short, this is the way to intentionally create a dynamically blurred background while shooting with ultrawide lens. While you sidestep with the camera, your rear-synched flash (balanced to ambient) freezes the foreground, and the rest is… well, blur. Works even with fisheyes.

I might be onto something again.

Professional photographers know how to overpower the Sun and turn a contrasty noon light into something photogenic. We use reflectors, diffusers and flashes, sometimes we combine them for better results… But what if you have just one flash in a softbox, but need to spread your light over much greater area than your gear allows?!

Enter Sun Smudge.

[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_2″ spacing=”yes” last=”no” background_color=”” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” background_position=”left top” border_size=”0px” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” padding=”” class=”” id=””]specularityThe law of reflection says that for specular reflection the angle at which the light is incident on the surface equals the angle at which it is reflected. And we need that specular reflection (not a diffused, or “feathered” one) to overpower the Sun. Look, it’s just like casting a sunbeam with the mirror.

This is old news for anyone who ever used a reflector during the shoot, but how does it apply to flash photography?![/fusion_builder_column]

[fusion_builder_column type=”1_2″ spacing=”yes” last=”yes” background_color=”” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” background_position=”left top” border_size=”0px” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” padding=”” class=”” id=””]We’re so often getting stuck in a certain mindset that we miss the obvious. When we think about flash photography, the softbox always considered to be the light source. Now, look at your trusted Ezybox (or whatever softbox you use for field portraiture). Look at the surface of diffusing panel. See, it’s a reflector! The beam from your flash goes in a fixed direction relative to the softbox, but you have a total control over specular reflection by manipulating your scene! As a result, you can illuminate one subject with the flash, and another one with reflection from the hottest light source in the Solar system!

Here’s a quick example (uncorrected JPEG straight from the camera):

Outdoor family photo

Have fun smudging that Sun, earthlings! :)[/fusion_builder_column]
[fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][fusion_alert type=”notice” accent_color=”” background_color=”” border_size=”1px” icon=”” box_shadow=”yes” animation_type=”bounce” animation_direction=”up” animation_speed=”0.1″ class=”” id=””]This is a repost from my old personal blog. I needed some content to test the responsive layout. Besides, I’ve decided to shut down “.me” site, so saving a good old post or two seemed like a good idea.[/fusion_alert][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]