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Advice on Canon Speedlites


I feel I am going really well with my on-camera flash abilities and am looking for advice on how to shoot portraits (and events) with more complex flash setups.

I currently use: 6D 580EX, basic diffuser 7 L-series lenses Tripod Reflector disc

I would specifically like to know:

  • For portraits, recommended setups for three-point-lighting.

  • For event photography, advice on off-camera flash setups.

  • Any online resources where I can learn more about using flash photography in these methods.

Thanks in advance.



Welcome to the forum.


If you go to YouTube and search on those topics I am sure you will find many resources.

John Hoffman
Conway, NH

1D X Mark III, Many lenses, Pixma PRO-100, Pixma TR8620a, LR Classic


What you need is syl arena's speedliters handbook, but alas it is out of print.

@kvbarkley wrote:

What you need is syl arena's speedliters handbook, but alas it is out of print.

I know this is a zombie thread, but feel I should point out that Syl Arena's Lighting for Digital Photography: From Snapshots to Great Shots is easily obtained either as an in-print paperback or ebook, and is basically a newer/better Speedliter's Handbook.

No it's not. (I have both), it is not even close. Speedliter's Handbook has much more technical data.


Go to the you-tube. See the channels of Canon USA and Canon Europe. Search for the Speedlite videos presented by Syl Arena. He can present this subject in a very personable way. The viewer need not be an espert, to grasp the concepts.


Syl Arena's books are out of print, but may be available on the secondary market.


The 580EX II was a quite significant step forward, in flash technology, and weather-sealing. Get one, or a 600EX-series Speedlite, if you can afford it, but keep your 580EX, as a very capable remote/slave flash.

Daniel Linnet's Top 10 Speedlite Tips
  • Tip #1: Do not fear.
  • Tip #2: Understand natural light.
  • Tip #3: Imagine the sun.
  • Tip #4: Know when to use flash.
  • Tip #5: Know your camera's maximum sync speed.
  • Tip #6: Trust in ETTL.
  • Tip #7: Use your camera settings.
  • Tip #8: Increase the power of your flash with your ISO.
  • MyBalanceNow

03/30/2023: New firmware updates are available.

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