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Learn By Doing Photography

Photographing a flower with a black background, using only natural light!

Assignment #24 – Take a picture of a flower, use a black background and use only natural light

Now how to photograph a black background without a flash, using only natural light? Here are a couple ways…

1. Spot meter on a flower that is in the sun, make sure the background is in the shade.
2. Bring a piece of black cardboard to hold as a backdrop. Make sure to put a little distance between your flower and the backdrop.
3. Use your camera bag as I did in the last picture on this post. You can also use a black shirt whatever is handy at the time.
4. ???? What other ideas do you have? Let me know and I will add them to the post!

I watched this excellent tutorial by DomBowerPhoto today. First he finds a flower in the sun with a shady spot for the background. The he uses the spot meter to meter the flower in the sun. Seems pretty simple, right? The darker your shadow, the darker your background will end up.

Alright, after I listened that tutorial I went out and gave it a try! The light on this particular flower I found at the park is a bit hard, but you get the point. The pink flower was in the sunlight and the grass in the background was in the shade.

For this shot I came in close using my
Canon 50mm lens
ISO 100
Shutter Speed 1/1000 sec

The above picture is right out of the camera, pretty dark! Right? We can take it one step further by simply adjusting the levels in Photoshop, Lightroom or whatever you choice photo editing software is and we are left with a solid black background!

This next picture is taken at the same park, but completely in the shade. I tossed my camera bag below the camera to get the darker background this time.

On this last picture my levels have been adjusted already giving me a nice black background. The settings I used for this picture were:
Canon 50mm lens
ISO 100
Shutter Speed 1/100 sec

Now that is a pretty cool trick!

Remember you can post your pictures at the bottom of this post or on DigitalCamFan FaceBook wall. If you have questions about “Learn By Doing” Please refer to the guideline page. If you have no questions post away!

Related posts:

Assignment #4 - Bokeh at Christmas
Learn By Doing - Focal Length (Assignment #7)
Learn By Doing - Macro


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