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More Light

As we have pointed out before, photography is all about capturing the nuances of how light interacts with the scene in front of you. In an ideal world, you'd always have all the light you need, but this is not the case. Plus, there are some very interesting things you can do when you bring your own light to the party. Most digital cameras come with a built-in flash to cover basic illumination needs, but the light that they produce is less than subtle, and you're limited in what you can do with it. All in all, we're not wild about the built-in flashes that come with most cameras, and in most cases, we use them only as a last resort if we can't find a way to get the shot using existing light (Figure 5.14). If you're serious about using artificial light sources in your photography, then you'll soon be considering adding a little extra light to your camera bag.

Figure 5.14. The built-in flash found on most digital cameras is convenient and at times necessary, but if there's any way to use natural light instead (top), we prefer that to the frontal, contour-flattening light from the on-camera flash (bottom).



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