Photo Tip: Halloween Pumpkins

I'm cutting it close with this tip's timing, but it worked out so well tonight that I figured I'd post it anyway. We carved our Halloween pumpkins this evening and I wanted to take some pictures of them for posterity.

In the past, this meant turning off the lights in the kitchen, putting a light inside the pumpkin, metering off the light in the pumpkin, and shooting. Without a tripod, I'd usually get a largely black photo with just the white/orange design of the carving visible. This year, I figured I'd use the tripod and do it right with a longer exposure.

On a whim, though, I decided to put the wireless flash INSIDE the pumpkin. I put some folded paper towel at the bottom of the pumpkin and left the OmniBounce attached. The flash head was aimed up toward the top of the pumpkin. I then placed a paper towel sheet inside the pumpkin, just behind the carving -- essentially like a curtain to diffuse the light further and ensure that the flash unit itself wasn't visible in the photo.

I then put the camera in Aperture priority mode, set it to a fairly wide aperture, pointed and clicked. The kitchen lights were still on so the outside of the pumpkin had good exposure and the flash inside the pumpkin made sure the design looked great as well. I was a little surprised that the D70 and the flash were able to communicate so well with the pumpkin and paper towel hanging between them. But the pre-flash/metering was solid and I didn't have to go through any trial and error.

Give it a shot!