In this post I want to share some of my experience using LumiQuest 80-20 Bouncer as speedlite flashgun modifier.
Firstly, I feel obligated to mention, is the fact that I had the LumiQuest 80-20 Bouncer for something like two years, and for this period of time I never even bother to use it. I also need to mention that for most of the time when I use, on camera, speedlite flashgun is when I’m photographing weddings, and for my wedding flash photography I tend to use very simple piece of, black, cardboard wrapped around the flash unit itself for narrowing and directing the beam of light when I’m bouncing it on to the surrounding surfaces. And this was usually the reason why I never even bother to put LumiQuest 80-20 Bouncer in my bag and to use it. You know how it is when you get into the habit of doing something then something else must happen to make you change your mind or make you use new tricks.
However, nearly 3 months ago I was approached by DHL hospital logistic branch in London and they were asking me to cover an event that was taking place over several different hospitals across London. I knew they were after some more corporate sort of photography style. So basically I needed to take in consideration quite few facts that determined my choice of how I was going to approach the whole project.
1. I was going to visit different locations and be photographing people/patients in a different environments, inside the hospital wards and outside locations such as car parks.
2. To get this corporate look, and consistency of my photographs, I was in need of some new solution for my flash. As this is was the sort of photography were I was not going to have any time to play and adjust lights, so I needed to be flexible and fast without the need to look around where to bounce my light or to be taking test shots.
3. I was going to photograph some very ill people who were in quite poor condition, in order to do this I needed to be sort of invisible and not flashing out in peoples eyes.
There were some more, on subconscious level, considerations that finally make me look for solution in the cupboard where I was keeping all my gear. As I was going trough all the stuff in there, suddenly, with the corner of my eye, I spotted that distinctive shape of the LumiQuest 80-20 Bouncer. Then instantly I remembered all of what I use to read about this unit, and I said to myself ‘Yeh, I will use it tomorrow, now is its time, enough laying useless in the cupboard’.
Ok lets not be taking too long and only building on text. Here is a small selection of images, after all this blog is about photography, where you can see the final product and results of of using the LumiQuest 80-20 Bouncer.
As you can see, from the images, I had achieved good consistency indoor as, I also was using Lumiquest, outdoor. I wasn’t expecting the modifier to work so well outdoor, as outside there isn’t ceiling where the 80% can bounce back. I should mention the camera and flash settings, as I found out how they worked together perfectly. For this photo assignment I was using my Canon 5D with 24 -105 mm F4 IS L lens and Canon 580 II EX speedlite unit. My camera, for most of the time, was set to work on AV mode and my speedlite unit on ETTL mode, here I like to point out that is quite important, when using Lumiquest 20/80, to gel your flas unit with, at least, half cut CTO. Without warming your flash up the whole combination tends to give quite cold look, especially on peoples skin. Also using the speedlite unit in ETTL mode allowed me to control my flash exposure in a way that I manage to make the Lumiquest unit quite useful outdoor.
After discovering, in real life, the advantages of this so useful modifier, all I can say is that I feel quite sorry that I haven’t started using it from the very first time I bought it.