Mixing Available Light with Artificial Light

By on 2014-07-15

Westcott Top Pro Rick Sammon is not only a renowned photographer, but is also the author of over 36 books, winning both the Golden Light Award and the Ben Franklin Award. A talented educator, Rick is the leader in mobile photography apps and hosts an array for photography workshops and presentations worldwide every year.

Here, Rick discusses how to properly set your camera and your lighting when mixing available light with artificial light. Shooting in a barn in Ohio, Rick fills in the shadows on his model with a speedlite. This speedlite is modified by a 26″ Rapid Box Octa. To properly expose the image, he sets his camera to manual and adjusts his fstop and shutter speed.

Background with Only Available Light
Rick Sammon - Available Light Background

Rick then introduces his speedlite (set to ETTL) and the Rapid Box to the scene. This artificial light becomes the main light over the available light, allowing his model to stand out in the image. He then dials down the manual exposure by 2/3 of a stop to darken the background.

Background and Model with Only Available Light
Rick Sammon - Available Light

After a few test shots, Rick is able to capture the beautiful image below by mixing both available and artificial light.

Final Image with Available Light and Artificial Fill Light

Rick Sammon - Available Light Final

Rick Sammon

Rick Sammon

Westcott Top Pro Elite Photographer
Rick Sammon is not only one of the world's foremost photographers, he's also a supremely talented digital imaging expert, he writes books, creates iPhone apps, and teaches numerous photography workshops&msash;and still finds time to travel the world photographing in over 100 countries.
Rick Sammon

Related Topics

Categories: Photography Tips;
Format: Videos;
Topics: General Photography Tips and Portrait Photography;
Gear: The Rapid Box;
Top Pros: Rick Sammon

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  • About these rapid boxes for speedlites, I heard something along the lines that you can stick 2 speedlites in a rapid box for more light power. But I seem to find the gear necessary to do this, can you provide like the equipment list in order to do this or was I mistaken about what I heard?

    • Team Westcott 8 months ago

      There currently is not an available accessory that will allow you to mount more than one speedlite in the Rapid Box. An accessory called the Triple Threat is available for modifiers with umbrella-style shafts, such as the Apollo and Halo softboxes. You can find the Triple Threat bracket on our website at http://www.fjwestcott.com/accessories/speedlite/triple-threat/triple-threat-bracket. Other than that, be sure to check back with us as we are constantly improving and updating our products. I hope that is helpful! We appreciate the feedback.
      Best regards,
      Jessica, Team Westcott