Light is one of the key components of any photo and it can have a huge impact on the way the photo looks and the feeling that the viewer gets. Working with natural light indoors can be a little tricky. These beginner tips will help you create beautiful photos using natural light.
1. It’s all about the windows and doors
Take note of what kind of light enters each room throughout the day. Sometimes it beams in, bouncing off the walls and floor. Other times it floods the room softly. Soft light will add a soft glow, and harsh light will give a dramatic or moody look. Place your subject a foot or two away from the light source. This way you’ll make the best use of the natural light. Try backlit, side lit, and full light by having your model face different angles to the window.
2. Lose the flash and turn off the lights
Our goal with photos is to make them authentic, and flash will sadly take your moment and flatten all the depth right out of it. It removes soft shadows that show definition and replaces it with harsh shadows that are super distracting. Electric lights can affect your white balance.
3. Look for catchlights
A catchlight is when indirect light fills your subjects eyes and lights them up. You can get awesome catchlights with indoor window light during the day by having your subject look toward the window.
4. Shoot in Aperture Priority mode
With indoor natural light photography, you need to let in as much light as possible. To do that, you’ll want a wide open aperture. The lower your aperture number (f-stop), the wider your aperture is open.
5. Keep ISO under or equal to 1600
If you go any higher, you almost always get grain in your photos. While it’s a nice option to be able to go higher for some of those really low light situations, I try my best to stay at or below 1600.
It’s easy to love indoor natural light photography. The setup is inexpensive and easy; and you can create beautiful photos no matter the weather or time of day!