“How are you managing to take photos in this light without flash?” This is a question which, as the days get shorter, I hear more and more often.
Well I’ve got two tactics. The first, which works well with reportage photography, is to spend the first couple of minutes after entering a room looking at the light sources. I normally take a quick snap too as the camera picks up light which I haven’t spotted. Once I know where the light is, it’s a question of waiting for something to happen there. Normally, this means waiting for the subject to move into the light so it falls on his or her face, like in the bottom two pictures. But it could mean shooting into the light, like with the picture above of Angelines Gonzáles Hernández, of Della Serra ice cream parlour.
My second tactic, which works with portrait photography, is to drag the person or people to wherever there’s nice light. That’s what I did with the picture below of Agustín Santolaya, of Bodegas Roda, signing a chair after giving a presentation in Francis Paniego’s Tondeluna restaurant earlier this week. It’s the same idea in the next picture of María José López de Heredia, of Bodegas López de Heredia and friends at a recent wedding in Hotel Echaurren, Ezcaray, La Rioja. So long as I’m courteous and not asking them to move a mile, I find people are willing to go along with my rather unorthodox approach.