Wedding Workshop Eight | Photographing The Reception: Fixed Pinned OCF
Fixed Pinned OCF
Fixed pinned off-camera flash is the ideal way to cover first and family dances during a wedding reception. Fortunately, this lighting style is not overly complicated to use. With a setup time of only one to two minutes using one to three lights/stands, you can use this method of lighting in any scene or location.
Here are some key tips when using this style of lighting with a single light:
- Ambient balance is crucial (subtle rim lights)
- 45-90 degree angle for main light
- Greater than 90 degree angle for moodier images
- Do not shoot in the same direction of the light
- Toggle off unwanted lights
As you can see in the diagram above, lights should be set high up at a top-down angle (to avoid casting shadows on your subjects’ faces) and aimed toward to center of the dance floor. The more lights you have, the more opportunities to include rim lights (see diagrams below).
Note: If the light is not hitting your subjects in an ideal way from its fixed position, you can move the light to a better location. If the song the subjects are dancing to is extremely short and time is limited, then better planning/positioning will be required.
Here are some key tips when using this style of lighting with multiple lights/flashes:
- Place rims at equal distance/height
- OCF rim lights set to equal power/zoom
- Grid or modify main light (flash disc)
- Toggle off unwanted lights (to avoid casting shadows)
Note: Look for objects to shoot through to add a creative element to the image, and be mindful of negative space.
Sometimes, the objects you use to create a shoot through can also be used to obscure unwanted elements in the background.