The Complete Guide To Mastering Reflections In Photography (Capture Or Remove)

How is it possible?! With what we are fascinated by the reflections and what we have talked about them and we have not yet dedicated an article to them as they deserve? Ok, yes, we have made challenges and a gallery in an inspiring way, but we have not sat down to tell you how to master them. Because of course, we love capturing their magic, but … do we always want them in our photos? Sometimes not. Sometimes we break our heads to avoid them because they are only a distraction, not a nice reflection that adds attractiveness.

Well, my intention today is that you learn to master them, either when capturing their beauty and attractiveness or to leave them out of the picture when they get in your way. Take note that these tips will come to you from the movies. Let’s go there!

Has it ever happened to you that you were trying to capture the beauty of crystalline water and the stones or little fish that were underneath and the only thing you have achieved has been a luminous surface? Or try to portray someone looking in the mirror and the flash appears in the photo. Or perhaps want to photograph the decoration of a room and that the reflections in the crystals spoil the whole harmony … These cases are quite common. But, luckily, there is a way to prevent them from happening. Let’s see how:

1. It uses a polarizing filter
In addition to providing you with a beautiful contrast between the blue of the sky and the white of the clouds, helping to eliminate the haze of landscapes or increase the saturation of colors, this filter reduces unwanted reflections. You can use it for landscape, interiors, photographing cars or when you need to reduce the reflections of any reflecting surface (glass, metal, water …).

2. Turn off the flash
Unless it is essential, do not use the flash and you will avoid its reflection. If you can not avoid it, follow the following advice.

3. Change the angle
This trick serves both time to avoid flash reflection as when a portrait someone who wears glasses, for example. Many times you will be able to eliminate the reflections you do not want by simply changing the angle from which you take the picture. You can also change the position of the reflective surface, for example, in the case of the portrait, it may be enough to turn a few degrees his face. In short, moves the light source, either a flash or lamp and if you can not, try to change the position of the object or shoot from another angle. Many unwanted reflections are eliminated with this simple gesture.

4. Stick the lens to the glass
When photographing through a glass, stick the lens well to the east. Except when you are in a moving vehicle, such as an airplane, a car or a train, in which case you must leave a centimeter of distance to avoid vibrations and your photograph is moved.

5. Turn off lights
Do you want to photograph the exterior from a glass? In addition to following the previous advice, turn off the lights, if they are on.

6. Clean crystals
The cleaner the crystal is, the purer its transparency. Whenever you can, make sure it is clean to avoid reflections that do not touch.

7. Photoshop
When none of the above works, it resorts to San Photoshop. If you can avoid it with the previous tips, much better for you. The result will be of higher quality and you will invest less time. But if it is not possible, pull it, the resources are there to use them. If you do not know how, look at Youtube, sure there is a tutorial to eliminate that reflection of that specific surface you are looking for;).

Not all reflexes are annoying, on the contrary, there are extreme beauty and interest. Surely you already know and that you have tried to capture them more than once and two times. In this section I will give you some tips to get spectacular reflex photographs.

1. Clear reflections
If what you want is to capture the reflection in the water, try to do it one day that does not make much wind or waves, the calmer the water, whether on a beach or in a lake, the sharper the reflection.

2. Abstract reflections
On the contrary you can play with the movement of water to create abstract or textured images. Well with the water moved by the air, by the passage of a boat or because you throw a stone into the water and form attractive waves that break the symmetry.

3. Silhouettes
The silhouettes are very attractive, if you capture their reflection, double attractive;). Backlit photography during sunrise or sunset and … voilà!

4. Creativity
Creativity has a lot of room in the reflections theme, turning the unreal into real, making the reflected motive the protagonist, investing, turning around, breaking patterns or anything you can think of to surprise will be welcome.

5. Angle
If changing the angle can help you reduce or eliminate annoying reflections, it can also help you capture those that interest you. A monument in a puddle, the reflection of an interesting face in a shop window, some children running by the sea at sunset. Duck or drop to the ground if necessary, try different angles until you get to the right place.

6. Composition
Take care of the composition, skip the rules if necessary, for example to look for symmetry. But take care of every element of the image. Decide exactly how you want to frame. Your reflection may be wonderful, but if the composition is not good, it will not help.

7. Clean crystals
Do not let a stain on a mirror or glass ruin your reflection. Try, whenever possible, to clean the surfaces where you want to capture your reflection.

8. Nocturnes
Take advantage of the night to capture the reflections of the lights.

9. Lighting
A reflection is best captured if the subject is well lit while the reflective surface is not. Take it into account also when photographing landscapes, when the light is dimmer and less overhead your reflections in the water will be much more spectacular, so the sunrise and sunset are very good times.

10. Get closer
The closer your camera is to the surface, the better you can capture the reflection.

11. Manual mode
Although it is not essential (the photo above is made with a mobile and automatic), using your camera in manual mode offers many more possibilities when it comes to master your reflexes. For example:

Use a small aperture to capture an entire reflected landscape
Work with a large aperture to focus attention on a foreground reflection and blur the rest
Use slow speeds to achieve better night reflexes or reflections
Control light exposure
In short, a manual mode increases your possibilities to infinity (and beyond …;)).

12. Skip the rules
The rules are for skipping them. Definitely. In the blog we teach them, we recommend that you keep them in mind, but also that you break them. Knowingly, of course. Here is a picture with dirty glass and annoying reflections, however, in my opinion, it is what makes the portrait interesting and different.

13. Inspiration
Finally, fill yourself with inspiration. In this article you will find many ideas and photos that will make you want to leave immediately in search of reflections. If you seem few, you can go here or here .

I hope I have helped you to master the most untamable reflections and to capture the most beautiful ones. It does not matter that yours are the landscapes, the portraits, the macro or street photography , to name a few. You can capture reflections in any discipline. Photograph them and enjoy them. Come on, your camera is waiting for you!

Pss, pss, do not leave so fast … If you found this article interesting, it is very likely that some of your contacts with whom you share photographic passion will also be useful. For this reason, I will thank you infinitely that you make it arrive sharing it in your favorite social network. Thanks and see you soon.


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