Tissue Over The Flash For Soft Light

I don't know about you, but I hate to use the pop-up flash on my camera. But sometimes you just have no choice, even shooting with wide open aperture and high ISO, it's just not light enough. I saw something on a youtube video a few weeks ago (and I wish I could remember when/where so I could give credit), about how in a pinch you could put a piece of this tissue in front of your flash to soften the light, and cut down on the harsh shadows.

Of course I had to try it ...

Jaiden has a tummy ache

The subject was my sick daughter Jaiden, laying on the couch in our living room with the only light coming from the TV to my left, and the hallway behind me. I was probably about 10 feet away from her, using the pop-up flash, with a piece of tissue held out about an inch or two in front of the flash.

I think I need a little more practice with this technique. But for a first attempt, I was happy with the way it turned out. The shadows behind the bowl and the couch are from the TV light. I really should have taken a "without tissue" shot for comparison. But even without that, I'm pretty sure that the green couch, purple blanket, her skin tone, and especially that white pillow would have looked much different with just straight flash.

I'm sure I'll be trying more of these in the future.


Do you have any "creative" shooting techniques that you've tested out recently?


  1. Todd,
    Sorry to hear Jaiden is sick. Hopefully she will be better/well real soon.
    Awesome picture. Looks like the tissue did the job intended to do. I also don't like to use the pop-up flash on those cameras either. I can never avoid the glace on a picture when using one.
    Thanks for sharing this with me. I have a camera with the pop-up flash I use some but not often because with lights on in the room there is no way you can avoid the glare. I'm going to get mine out and try the tissue technique you used.
    I don't have any “creative” shooting techniques that i have tested out recently, but sounds like a great idea I need to get started looking for some and trying them?
    Thanks for sharing.


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