Digital Photo Academy

Learn How To Use Your Digital Camera

Donít Use Flash!

Digital Photo Academy and LivinginHD present a free monthly series of photography webinars on Your host, John Bentham answers many questions live during the webinars. Additional questions and answers are posted here on You can also view the archived webinars for reference.



Photo by David Sanders, DPA Instructor in Phoenix, AZ

Don’t Use Flash!

Sometimes, even though technically and intuitively the scene calls for it, you are better off not using flash at all. There are instances where a scene is very dark, under lit, with black holes, areas without any detail at all. Your first inclination is to turn on the flash and add light to the scene. Sometimes you’ll get a better photo if you learn to fight that urge. The photo above shot by David Sanders, DPA Instructor in Phoenix, AZ is a perfect example of one of those moments. By dialing in a correct exposure for the end of day setting sun and fading sky, and keeping his flash turned off, David has reduced the other elements in the frame, notably the cowboy, pick up truck and lariat to a silhouette. David could easily have added a little on-camera flash to lighten them up, balancing the flash output with the sky, but by choosing what some would consider an incorrect exposure he has created a timeless photograph of an American Icon, resulting in a more unique image, with more power and impact than the expected and typical well illuminated photograph. This photo makes me want to be there, and that’s the best you could hope from your photos.

Submitting your photographs for webinar consideration: Specifications and requirements.

Anyone can submit photographs for inclusion in the DPA, LiHD Webinar, Online Photo Class Series. If you would like to submit your photographs for an upcoming webinar, please read the following. Each webinar has a specific theme or topic. First go to, Tip of the Day, to determine the theme for the next webinar. Then review the submission requirements below and submit your photographs to Note that webinars are edited and formatted days in advance, thus please submit your photos at least a week in advance of the webinar, late submissions can not be added. Photographs are chosen, and edited, for their applicability to the webinar theme, artistic and technical merit, and content length. If your photograph is NOT chosen, it will be archived and may appear in a more appropriate future webinar.

Please submit your images in the following specs:
Compressed JPEG
Approx size 1MB per image
200 dpi
10 inch size longest edge

Please include your name and city in the image file name as below:

Please also include brief captions including subject, location and any pertinent tech info.
If it is not immediately clear from your image, for which webinar you are submitting photos, please indicate this as well.

By submitting your photographs for consideration, you grant and authorize, The Digital Photo Academy, and Panasonic, the following: The right to use your photograph(s) in the content and promotion of the webinar series, and for use on each company’s respective website. You further authorize your photograph(s) may be archived online and/or in a database, and allow unrestricted internet availability of the webinar(s) containing your photograph(s). You further authorize the use of your photograph(s) in any future webinars. By voluntarily submitting your photographs for consideration you agree to the aforementioned without any legal claims, or claims for remuneration, whatsoever. You, as the photographer, retain the copyright © of any submitted photograph(s) and proper photo credit and acknowledgement will appear with your photograph whenever possible and practical.


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