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Joe McNally Shares Some Incredibly Useful Lighting & Basic Photography Tips


Joe McNally knows a good bit more about lighting than many photographers out there, and in this short video he shares a great deal of information pertaining to both TTL flash lighting as well as adapting to a situation and using natural light.

McNally starts off the tutorial by shooting a model with a diffused speedlight attached to his camera, showing us the less-than-ideal results. Then he quickly creates a much more aesthetically pleasing solution by using an off-camera flash shot through a 1-stop diffusion panel. This method effectively turns the single speedlight into a much larger light and more pleasing light source, almost giving the light a softbox-esque look.

After demonstrating that, McNally gets a bit distracted in the best way possible by the natural light streaming into his studio space. And so he decides to go off-topic and demonstrate that, when it comes to capturing photographs, you need to always be aware of the changing environment.


Noticing the very beautiful natural light, he drops his flashes and has his model move over into the glow from the windows for some absolutely gorgeous shots.

As McNally explains, we need to be opportunistic while out in the field, making use of the best resources available to us. This is a black background, flash photography tutorial; but when McNally saw an opportunity to take it in a different direction, he didn’t hesitate.

The video will only take up three and a half minutes of your time, but McNally manages to squeeze in a great deal of very useful information that you won’t want to miss out on.

(via ISO 1200)