What’s better than those beautiful, natural family photos? You know those outdoor ones that appear to have happened at the most beautiful time of day with perfect lighting.

This is an area in which I specialise, after all, photography is all about capturing ‘light’ and this is where my expertise lie.

There are a lot of things to think about when taking pictures outdoors and lighting is probably the most important factor. Also living in England almost seems to amplify my lighting sixth sense because the conditions can change so quickly.

The key to getting the best out of outdoor photographs is by using something called ‘fill flash’. This is used in conjunction with natural light but it doesn’t work in the traditional way that a flash does.

The purpose of fill flash is to fill in some of the unflattering shadows that we see in portrait photography and rather than lighting the entire scene, it works alongside natural light to achieve the best possible image.

There’s a bit of an art-form to using flash and a lot of photographers don’t use it because they don’t feel comfortable with it or understand the best possible way to use it. I’ve been using flash ever since I first got into photography and spent years mastering the art of flash photography. I now have a flash on top of my camera during every outdoor session and I can adapt it almost instantly to achieve the best results.

At this point you’re probably wondering why this concerns you. The reason for mentioning this is that when it comes to portrait photography and booking a photographer it’s very important to book someone who has the correct equipment and that they know how to use it to the best of their ability, in each differing situation.

I’ve heard some family photographers (usually just starting out) make claims that they only use ‘natural light’ and sometimes use this as a selling point but unless they are able to personally change the weather this makes little sense and could easily impact on the session you’ve spent your hard-earned money on. The key to getting it right is by “using the right equipment/lighting, in the right conditions”.

So how do you find the right photographer?

Although I would like to say to just book myself I appreciate that my style may not be for you. The best thing you can do is ask some questions about equipment and experience. If you hear phrases like “I only use natural light” I suggest you steer clear and go elsewhere.

Are you looking for an Oxfordshire based family photographer? Get in touch today to find out what I can do for you!