Fill Flash (Travel Photo Tip!)

Daylight Flash

You might think that the flash on your phone or camera is for taking pictures when it’s dark.

You’re part right.

One of the best uses of your flash is when it’s not dark! When there’s daylight out and you or your friends are “backlit”.

In looking at Travel Blogs & CouchSurfing profiles, I’ve seen so many pix of peeps visiting amazing places around the globe, but often the peeps are hidden in heavy shadows.

This happens because the light meter in your phone or camera “sees” lots of daylight and so it gives a very small exposure. It doesn’t realize that that shadowy blob (you) in the foreground is also important.

SOLUTION: Just turn your flash to “on”.

screen cap of Moto-G phone camera showing flash options
Flash settings on my Moto-G phone

Here’s the choices on my Moto-G phone:

  • Auto
  • On
  • Off

Flash: ON!

  • Auto – let the camera decide. In the case of backlight, your camera might think there’s plenty of light and stay off.
  • Off – is off
  • On – flash no matter what. Perfect for backlight where your phone / camera might think there’s plenty of light, but you know the peeps will be in backlit shadows

Often I like to turn Flash Off in the dark… and On in the light! I turn flash off in the dark because it can overpower, and a good camera (which the Moto-G isn’t) can pick up subtle tones in low light. But in daylight you often have harsh shadows in foreground subjects like people, so “forcing flash” or “flash on” can be a big help!

(my phone doesn’t have a 4th option, “Slow Sync”, but yours might. It’s an awesome way to capture night images. I’ll write about that next time!)

Ida & Czarek in front of a spectacular landscape
What could make this great travel photo of Ida & Czarek in Thailand even better? Fill Flash! The beautiful background would be the same, but Ida & Czarek in the foreground would be better lit and we could be a little closer to sharing the moment with them.

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