5 Steps to Amazing Photos Using Natural Light Indoors

by | Light

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Many of you know that I live in Germany. Now, Germany is known for a lot of things…Oktoberfest, Biergartens, Schnitzel, The Black Forest, but weather…not so much. It rains a lot, and in the winter, the days are short, painfully short. In December, it begins to get dark by about 4:00, and the sun doesn’t come up until around 9:00. That, combined with the rain, doesn’t make for a lot of hours of good light, but that doesn’t worry me, and it shouldn’t bother you. If you follow these 5 steps to amazing photos using natural light indoors and you won’t have anything to worry about!

In my previous blog, I talked about how learning to find the light and making that light work for you is an important step in your photographic journey. That can be difficult if you live somewhere that the weather doesn’t cooperate with you. Now, as I said, I lived in Southern California. You know the song “It Never Rains In Southern California”? Well, it doesn’t!! And when I moved to Germany, I had my work cut out for me as far attempting to get amazing photos using natural light inside.

After a few days of shock at the lack of sun and a blue sky, I did what I suggested that you do. I got out my notebook and watched the light for a week. I learned where the best light in my house was. I learned at what time, even on the greyest of days, I could count on that light to come through the window, and then, I started to use that light.  

5 Steps to Get Amazing Photos Using Natural Light Indoors…

Here some ways for you to get amazing photos using natural light indoors…

1. Many of you already know you want to turn off the lights when photographing inside. If you have competing light sources, this will affect your white balance. Use the light from the window to light up your subject.  

2. Face your subject towards the light. After that, have your subject angle off of the light source and use that natural light to create flattering shadows and catchlights in their eyes. Catchlights are those little squares of light that you catch in your subject’s eyes giving them life.

3. Move your subject around the house, and don’t forget the bathrooms. Yes, the bathrooms. Bathrooms have fantastic natural light.

4. Crank up the ISO if needed. You read that correctly. Most cameras nowadays can handle a high ISO. And it’s okay to have a bit of grain in your photo. If your photo is exposed correctly, and your ISO is high, you will have a picture with much less noise.  

5. Lastly, have fun creating amazing photos using indoor light. Close curtains to diffuse the light. For instance, close blinds to create dappled light. Experiment with how close and how far your subject is to the window. Even hang a blanket over the window and see what kind of shadows you can achieve.  

There are so many ways to achieve amazing photos using indoor light. Now, grab your camera and try out a few of these tips, and don’t forget to pop into my Facebook Group to share a few!

catchlight photos using natural light indoors teen
Catchlights with Natural Light Indoors
catchlight photos using natural light indoors woman
Catchlights with Natural Light Indoors
catchlight photos using natural light indoors man
Catchlights with Natural Light Indoors


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