When it comes to photography, lighting is not just crucial, it is absolutely everything. Lighting is what separates great photographs from dull ones. Despite the effects, colors, or focus being used in a photo, there is no getting away from the photographer’s primary tool. If painters use paint, photographers use light. 

Light defines the forms in your picture, depending on the strength of the shadows and the direction of your light source. If a photographer understands light, he or she can become a master of his/her work. A spotlight from above, for example, can give a face a sense of power and grace, whereas a well-placed flashlight below the chin can turn the friendliest face into a ghastly glare. A fluorescent light has a way of sucking the warmth out of even the most tender images, whereas a golden sunset can overpower nearly any circumstance with intense romantic beauty. 

In this gallery, we have collected photos from users in our community who have found creative ways of using their light sources to achieve images with interesting compositions and compelling emotions. Have a look for yourself. Whether you are looking for new ideas on how to think about light in your own work, or if you just want to see some cool photography, this gallery is for you! 

Don’t forget to tag your own images that feature alternative approaches to lighting with #lighting.

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light effects

light effects

light effects

light effects

light effects

light effects

light effects

light effects

light effects

light effects

light effects

light effects

light effects