A lens flare is the light that scatters within the lens because of unplanned reflection and lens impurities. Often seen as an unwanted effect, many photographers use things like lens hoods and specially coated lens to reduce or eliminate lens flares. Alternatively, it can also be used on purpose to invoke a sense of drama in an image. Luckily, lens flare photography does not rely on natural light to create this incredible effect, which makes it a versatile way to enhance your pictures. For instance, photographers can use off-camera flash to re-create the sun and make it possible to capture lens flare images even when the sun isn’t out. This includes shooting at night! Moreover, when all else fails (or even before then), we can use photo editing software like Lightroom to add lens flare to our images during post-production.
While we love to add creative touches like lens flare to spruce up our photos, it’s important to remember that amazing imagery depends most heavily on a well-executed photograph. In other words, we should always prioritize the composition, lighting, and posing in our photos. As a result, lens flare photography serves in the capacity of a dessert or a special ingredient as opposed to a main dish or main ingredient. You can find tips on taking better pictures in general in these other articles on our site:
- iPhone Photography Tips
- Portrait Photography Tips
- Wedding Photography Tips
- Nighttime Portrait Photography Tips
- Food Photography Tips
I also recommend taking a look at these lens flare tips from our friends at Adorama for more insight on how to use lens flare to enhance your photos.
That said, check out these 31 great examples of vibrant lens flare photography to see how lenses flares can be used in beautiful ways. Spring is here, so it’s a great time to experience lens flare photography and improve your skills.