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Light modifier

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Light modifiers change the quality or colour of the light.

Gels go over the light to adjust its colour temperature and/or hue. Matching colour temperature is essential when there is also ambient light.

Soft-boxes go over the light to dramatically increase the area of the light, thus softening it.

Shoot-through umbrellas act as highly portable, though less efficient, soft-boxes.

A snoot is an attachment which goes over the light to reduce the width of the beam.

Barn-doors are four-leaf attachments on the front of lights, used to shape and limit the light.

Diffusers are commonly used with hand-held flashguns, either supplied with the flash, or purchased separately such as the Gary Fong Lightsphere.

Reflectors reflect the light, and are the most ubiquitous light-modifiers. Reflective umbrellas are mounted on the flash, while flat reflectors are positioned near the subject to direct the light onto it. They are often used for fill, and are the only light modifiers which can be used with available light photography. Reflectors can be matt or silvered, and can be coloured to alter the hue or colour temperature of the light.

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  • This page was last modified on 25 October 2009, at 18:19.
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