Skip to main content

Speedlites: Zoom and Rotating Flash Head and Reflectors

Lesson 20 from: Picture Perfect Lighting

Roberto Valenzuela

Speedlites: Zoom and Rotating Flash Head and Reflectors

Lesson 20 from: Picture Perfect Lighting

Roberto Valenzuela

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2200+ more >

Lesson Info

20. Speedlites: Zoom and Rotating Flash Head and Reflectors


Class Trailer



Intro and Who This Class is For


3 Groups for All Lighting Scenarios


My Progress in Lighting


Analyzing Circumstantial Lighting


Circumstantial Lighting Q & A


Using a Reflector the Right Way


5 Behaviors of Light: Overview and Angle


5 Behaviors of Light: Inverse Square Law of Light


5 Behaviors of Light: Relative Size


5 Behaviors of Light: Relative Size Continued


5 Behaviors of Light: Color


5 Behaviors of Light: Reflective Surfaces


5 Behaviors of Light: Q & A


Location SWOT Analysis and 10 Things to Look For


Location SWOT Analysis: Examples and Exercises


Overview Q & A




Speedlites: The Basics and TTL


Speedlites: Manual Flash


Speedlites: Zoom Flash


Speedlites: Zoom and Rotating Flash Head and Reflectors


Speedlites: First Curtain vs. Second Curtain Sync


Speedlites: High Speed Sync


Speedlites: Optical vs. Radio Systems


Speedlites: Groups and Channels


Location Lighting Upgrade Examples


Indoor Lighting: Building on Ambient Light


Outdoor Lighting : Speedlights in Direct Sunlight


Outdoor Lighting: Using Speedlites in Shade


Outdoor Lighting: Romantic Look and Patterns with Speedlites


Indoor Lighting: Creating a Window with Strobes and a Curtain


Indoor Lighting: Moody Light with Speedlites and Gels


Indoor Lighting: Reflective Surfaces


Indoor Lighting: Shooting Against a Window


Indoor Lighting: Adding a Reference Point and Ambience


Indoor Lighting: Shooting into a Mirror and Creating Separation




Why You Need to Learn to Get it Right In Camera


Location Photo Review and Analysis


Intro to Reception Lighting SWOT Analysis


Reception Lighting Setup


Image Critique: Lighting Problems and Solutions


Don't Limit Yourself As A Photographer


Lesson Info

Speedlites: Zoom and Rotating Flash Head and Reflectors

When you walk into a location we talked about the top ten things I look for when I walk into a room right? One of those stopped in things is light motor fires like natural light modifiers there is a natural lie modifier here if a curtain the current issa sheer material on its white so if I need to put more light on this out of her face to give it that dimension I can put another flash here and fire her this way or I can do what rotate the flash head right? I can rotate the flash into the curtain the current will bounce the light back into this out of her face if I didn't see the opportunities threats on strengths and weaknesses of this location I would be like ok, I don't know what to do but as soon as you walk into this room I said curtain that's a lot of natural light mortar fire that's it that's what you do so she's standing right there I'm going to basically grabbed my flash head and I'm going to fire direct first okay? Uh let's see here I'm on t t l I'm gonna leave it there on dh ...

I'm gonna fire direct and he looks like a sea here looks like uh that now watch you gonna grab them the flash and you're going to rotate the flash head to the left side that's going to be a bounce and is going to bounce the lights right back that's going to give you a really cool dimension in her face okay take a look at that take a look at that carefully you see that little piece of light on the left side of her face now here's where the zoom question will come in for me it's it's nice but I wanted a little bit more I don't want to I'm not going to raise the power of this I'm just going to assume the flash head okay so I'm gonna assume the flash ed from twenty four two seventy k and I'm going to show let's see what happens now look at the difference between those two now why does that happen? Because the angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection so when I made the beam of light more sensitive when I made the beam of light mohr narrowed correct that the light came out it hit this curtain and and if it hit this angle it might have bounced that way a metal bounced that way on less race of light hitter directly so it gives you the high contrast light now watch this I'm going to go from seventy and I'm gonna assume the flash all the way to two hundred making it even mohr sensitive okay, that looks pretty bad so take a look at that it's pretty terrible right so when people say my flashes so frustrating I don't get what I don't get this beautiful just like relax you if you remember those four behavior does five behaviors of light then you would think that all freaking out you would simply think my light is too harsh what causes harsh light beam off light beam of light hits the person and he calls the shadows how do I feel the shadows with more light hitting her face so I go okay more like eating her face I have a curtain and it's not moved if all rippling and is making all these angles right so all you have to do say for me to increase the chances of more lightning or forgetting her face I'm going to increase the angles that the light hits the currently on makes sense so now when the beam of light comes out instead of being a little tiny beam this way and then he bounces off their re bounces off there I'm going to tell my flash put lighting the entire curtain that way I don't care if some light goes that way and some light goes this way there will be like a billion lights going all over the place given enough light to illuminate both sides of her face and you solve that problem so let's check it out okay wide angle okay let's check it out okay look how beautiful that looks now you go from that the one that looks like no flash was used at all. This is why those five behaviors of light are always a plague, always our play on if you try to fix flash problems without the high behaviors of light in your head, you're probably gonna have a hard time because that solution came from the angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection. That's what caused that to look that way? Uh, we have our future coming. The pro photo one it's right there at the bottom. Now at a real job, if I don't have a clean wall like this is like a curtain. So it's bending all over the place if I don't have a clean wall, I simply used this, okay, I grabbed this, they have a reflector, I need just any reflective would work. This is a really cool flash technique that I want to share with everyone that I use if you put this diffuser on this side of her and you bounced the light off this, this angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection is a lot more predictable, right? Because just a flat surface that is going all over the place, so you don't know what the angle is going to hit if you use that thief you, sir, you're going to get pretty good, pretty good look but the problem is a diffuser is goingto put fifty seventy per cent of the light is going to go out so what I do I mean for us for a second I put the diffuser here and then I put the reflector in front of it like this then I put this this way and now this is not a crazy reflective material some accents this is still a diffuse material but the reflector doesn't let the light escape from the back so you get a really gorgeous quality of life that we show you that you hold on for a second let's put that right there you know? Yesterday I used with little clips clamps I climbed those two together all the time yes, so you wouldn't use the white side of the reflector yesterday I think you say because it's shimmery the material is all right if I mean just out of a that's right? They I actually somebody facebook me yesterday said that they don't have one that doesn't have a machine to it I just haven't seen in I haven't seen them the white side of reflectors come with like a glossy material thing like it's a crystal ling stuff on that really karsh isto light up for me so I don't use it uh this technique works extremely well this one right here let's put it up unless I'm going to go further back now remember angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection so the angle off your flash has too much where she's at and where that the few series that was another problem out of work people were doing it and that light was not reaching the person at all because the angle was hitting the back or something like this so I'm going to quickly do a quick angle check I'm gonna hit that that has been angled to compensate for my angle flash head on then that's going to bounce and hit her in the face so okay too much power we lower this on that's quite soft and beautiful hey check that out that's the one that's too much power look out nice that looks now one side of her face it's a little bit brighter than the other one I know I can predict exactly where the light's going to be because I'm putting my diffuser on my reflector together I'm clamping them together you get there use that technique another it's gonna be like a lifesaver for you so if I made uh fuser with diffusion as your white you'd buy it I would buy it like right now like how it by two okay this also works if you have a red wall grey walls and you don't want a color cast okay if you want to call her cast put that technique like that it would make it work remember this though I've seen people do this on the flash head is coming this way and I'm like no no no angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection so if you bounce the light this way is just gonna go out the same way came in to see what I mean this has to he has to come in at an angle on the angle has to match to hit her so has to be this way let's see what happens if I just used the diffuser okay just try that it's gonna look good but it's gonna look a little street little better a little more kick with a reflector so for that here yeah I find it a little bit too flat for my for my face there so the reflector does work better if you put the diffuser here and the reflect on the reflector behind it gives you more control and it's the lightest totally soft if we go outside right now and you use the technique you will give people the most amazing quality of light and nobody will ever know you use flash it would just look super soft ok ok another one is assuming the flash putting the flash air up towards you okay if you put it all the way up angle of incidence equals angle of reflection again so it's going to go up into the ceiling and then come straight down into the bounced light everywhere. So that's fine. What I like to do is do a forty five degree light and then it's going going toe match this way. And this is a silly thing I do, but he works like a charm for me. In order to control the angle, I pull out the white card, okay? And I actually bend it a little bit that that that's it. So let me show you what I mean, okay? When I hit this one first, it's gonna look pretty much flat. Now I'm going to grab the white card and I'm just going to give it a little kick. I'm going to make the a little more light hitter directly. People ask me all the time what happens in receptions for places where there's no ceiling you can bounce the light that's what? I do know this is the ceiling, so I just I just really I just keep bending the light this way. Okay? So a little bit more powerful now. Little more power try this time. Look at that just a little bit more of a notch off power. Then you see that so I receptions if you have no ceiling or no roof that's a different segments, but if the flash comes out this way, most of the light's going to go up a little bit of the light's gonna hit this card and he's, going to hit her in the eye, is going to give you a catch like that's. What, this is force kind of tickling a catch like card or whatever. But if you're stealing is red or blue or black or brown, or whatever the color of this is, or you have no ceiling at all, then the flash hits this. You're going to make it here, even more of it. And it's going to basically bend the flash forward without doing this, because that's direct flash. Okay.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

10 Elements to Look For at a Location

Ratings and Reviews


Im sitting in my office listening to Roberto with my earplugs on and I know I have already left 2 reviews but he's so funny…. my family comes into the office asking me "whats so funny" Roberto makes me laugh out loud with his jokes but at the same time, he is SO great at teaching. Im watching for second time to make sure all his good info is ingrained. HIGHLY recommend you take his workshop on Picture Perfect Lighting if you truly want to take your photography to the next level! WOW thats 3 reviews now…can you tell I am impressed

Maureen T.

I'm taking a portrait photography course at NYIP online. one of the mentors there recommended the posing book by Roberto. I ended up ordering at the library the posing and the perfect practice book. I fell in love with both books...ended up buying them and signing up here for the year membership just so I can take all of his photos courses. I spent most of my weekend doing perfect lighting course here I am in love with the way that he teaches! He makes something so difficult and challenging for me make sense. I also like that he challenges us photographers to be true professionals. I am thrilled to have discovered Roberto and already noticed my photography is better in the short time that I've been studying him.


Roberto has the personaliyy and gift to relate to others.He is honest and shared some of rhe disaters that occurred, even with high paying and important clients when he failed to follow his proven and tested approaches. He has shared from his extensive knowledge developed by hard work and effort to master his craft. His dedication in attacking his weaknesses and making them a strength is inspiring. I have purchased many CL classes and all have worth the investment so I hesitated to purchase this course because I didn't think there was much new information. However the clear teaching and extensive knowledge shared by Roberto in his unique style caused me to purchase it gladly and believe it is an exceptional value. Roberto has shared his extensive tools, but you will never be the master of the craft without putting in the hard work and testing that roberto testified to. Thanks again CL for bringing the best to us and Thank you Roberto for taking the time and preparation to achive excellance in in this class.

Student Work