The Photographs on the left shows my basic setup for “still life” shots but is largely
applicable to my workshop shots also. The main flash points into the metal dome reflector
seen on the right of the camera but this can be on the left and occasionally above
the camera depending the requirements of the item being photographed.
I almost always use a tripod for the camera, the only exception being when there
is insufficient space for the tripod to stand. Whilst the flash gun points into the
reflector it is of the type that allows the head to pivot through 180 degrees, the
auto sensor that determines the duration of the flash can therefor still point directly
at the item being photographed. I have included three photographs below to illustrate
the difference between direct flash, reflected flash and with added fill in flash.
In the left hand picture the head of the flash gun was pivoted so that it pointed
directly at the item being photographed. It can be seen that the result is a very
pronounced shadow, even to the point that the holes in the dividing plate clearly
In the middle picture the head was turned to face into the reflector as is always
my method and it can be seen that the shadow is much less clearly defined, it is
though still quite dark. Even so, it is still a much better picture than the first.
In the right hand picture the small flash gun (see the picture on the previous page)
with the slave unit fitted was held to the left of the camera which then fired in
synchronization with the main flash. The flash is held with a loop of paper around
the front of it to prevent its beam being too direct else its result would be similar
to that in the left hand picture. In this the shadow is now much more subdued but
there is just evidence of the added flash by the fact there is now a very light shadow
on the right of the dividing head. The picture is a major improvement, even over
the one in the centre.
In the absence of a second flash gun a sheet of white faced hardboard, or some other
comparable item, would reflect light from the main flash and give a similar, if less
Construction of the Dividing Head featured was published in MEW issues 53 and 54,
also WPS book no.37 Dividing