This week I have decided to talk about lens flare. Lens flare is that cool technique photographer’s use when the sun is shining right into the lens. The light scattered throughout the lens system causes the photo to have a washed out look or even big spots of light. This is lens flare.
You can feel the warmth radiating from the photo. I like to make use of Mother Nature’s lighting whenever possible, and this technique is one of my favourites.
Here are a couple tips for shooting into the sun and using that sun flare to your advantage.
1.) Take your lens hood off.
All the fantastic lenses out there have great hoods to help eliminate such flare on a bright sunny day, so taking it off will instantly increase your chances for creating a beautiful flare in your photo.
2.) Make sure the sun is shining.
As lens flare is a reflection of the sun in your lens, the idea behind it is to get direct sunlight in your lens while shooting. It helps to plan your shoot around the time of day when the sun gets lower, either morning or afternoon. In winter the sun can be low enough all day, which is fantastic.
3.) Don’t forget to over-expose.
As you will be shooting into direct sunlight, your camera will be telling you to close down your aperture. You want to ignore that, and I usually add 1-2 stops. You might find shooting on manual easier, finding the correct exposure, and sticking with that.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with angles and move around your subject. Any slight changes can completely change the type of lens flare, the size, the colour and the outcome on your photo. So play around with it and use it to accentuate the style of your photo shoot!