Avoiding Red Eyes
Taking pictures with a digital camera is very fascinating and not having to worry about a film running out is another plus point. However, digital photography has its own drawbacks. The user must understand the basics to produce decent photos worth the most prized digital camera. We try our best to educate our readers with these small yet important details. One of the nooks associated with photography is of the red eye. I will try making this concept clear by giving a detailed introspection. In simple definition we break down the red eye phenomenon in three things. The three things are as follows:
- Ambient level of light because low light will cause the retina to open wider to allow more light to enter thereby giving the red eyes in photographs.
- Younger people have wider retinas and hence have a greater chance of red eyes in pictures.
- The reflection angle of the flash plays a huge role. It’s a question of physics but let’s dig right into it. When the light from the flash is reflected back to the digital camera and the closer the incident light beam is to the reflected light beam, the greater is the effect.
We can use flash brackets to make the flash a bit removed from the adjacency of the camera to minimize the effect of the reflected angle of the flash. However, people often use wireless flash triggers and reflectors to position the flash so that the light hits the subject from a different angle. Since we know the basics of the problem, let’s get into the details and pin out ways to reduce the problem.
You must ensure that the angle of reflection is wide enough that the beam returning from the retina doesn’t hit directly into the lens. This can be attained by photographing from an angle or placing the flash at a distance so that light doesn’t reflect directly onto the lens. Another way to minimize the effect is to shine a light onto the person’s eyes right before the picture is taken. This light allows the iris to shrink and narrow down. It is called the pre-light. Many cameras come with this function built-in. You can turn this feature on and flash a pre-light to avoid this problem in your photos. However, the person must be looking directly at the flash for the pre-light to work.
As mentioned above, ambient light is another factor that influences the red eye effect. The rule of thumb is that the brighter the ambient light; the lesser the effect of red eyes. Another factor is the position of the camera flash. The further away is the flash from the lens, the lesser is the effect of red eyes. The key idea to remember is that red eyes are not caused by the ambient light or by the flash rather they are caused by the strength of light and the position of the flash.
You can use the built-in feature for anti-redeye in your digital camera to minimize the effect of red eyes. Also, you can change the angle of the flash and play around with the ambient light. We have tried to explain the phenomenon of red eyes in photographs and now it is up to you to implement these ideas according to your shooting circumstances.
Hope you have enjoyed this brief article and we encourage you to take advantage of our photography tips and tutorials for digital cameras.