Taking beautiful indoor photos is a challenging task for photographers because of the limited amount of available light. If for example, you set your camera to auto mode, this camera setting generally leads the camera to lower the shutter speed and increase the ISO levels. Which probably would produce an unwanted blur and noisy photos.
To tackle this situation and to have more control over your camera settings, you need to use the manual mode and choose the right settings to maximize sharpness, minimize noise, and get the effects you want.
In this article, I will discuss how you can use the available light to your favor by applying some tips, also I will explain how to get the proper camera settings for indoor photography.
Tips for Shooting Indoor
Look for the Right Light
The main reason photographers struggle with indoor photography is the limited light. Generally, indoor areas tend to be shadowy and dark, so it is important to plan your shooting time to take the advantage of any natural light sources that come from outside through windows.
Windows are the best source of natural light. They also make fantastic foregrounds and backgrounds. You can use them to enhance your compositions:
Foregrounds: place your subject behind a window to create beautiful reflections
Backgrounds: place your subject in front of a window to create a soft, backlit look
You have to take your time to study how the outside lighting falls through the windows in different rooms throughout the day, and try different locations of your subject.
Because natural light is limited at indoor locations, you should get as much light as possible, so take your shoots at these times of day:
- Midday: midday light looks fantastic indoors. Place your subject in front of a curtained window to get the most flattering results.
- Golden hour: You might already be familiar with this magical time of day. It is shortly after sunrise and before sunset. The diffused light is perfect for every photography genre.
Maximize the existing light
You’ll need to maximize existing light. There are many ways to increase the natural light on your subject:
- Use a reflector, reflectors are great for daytime or nighttime photography and they provide powerful lighting compensation wherever you go. A reflector bounces light back toward your subject, and it’s a great way to keep your entire subject nicely lit. For the shots below, a reflector is used to reflect the window light to the other side of the subject, which helped lighten the shadows.
Use a reflective backdrop, a white backdrop will help catch the light and bounce it back onto your subject
Consider using artificial lighting
If you don’t have any natural lighting source where you’re shooting, you can go for artificial lighting such as a flash or Speedlight with a suitable modifier. While working with off-camera flash is not easy, and needs some experience it will boost the light intensity and give you plenty of illumination to work with.
It is worth mentioning that you have to be careful when setting the white balance, artificial lighting will produce some color casting on your photos, also try not to mix natural light with artificial light in one shoot.