You Keep Shooting with Bryan Peterson: 2nd and Rear Curtain Sync: Adorama Photography TV Adorama Photography TV Presents, You Keep Shooting with Bryan Peterson. Join Bryan as he explores creative techniques that will elevate your photography skills. Watch as he describes two approaches to photographing subjects in low light with an electronic flash. Knowing about your camera’s shutter is very important when shooting in low light. A slower shutter speed will allow more movement in your photograph. In this episode, Bryan will explain how and when it is appropriate to use electronic flashes during low-lighting conditions. AdoramaTV features talented hosts including Mark Wallace, Gavin Hoey, Joe McNally, Joe DiMaggio, Tamara Lackey, Bryan Peterson, and Rich Harrington. Related Products: Gel Kits Understanding Flash Photography, by Bryan Peterson Understanding Photography Field Guide, by Bryan Peterson If you have questions, share them with us at:

24 Responses to “You Keep Shooting with Bryan Peterson: 2nd and Rear Curtain Sync: Adorama Photography TV”

  1. Doesn’t it matter whether the flash illuminates the scenery at the beginning or at the end of the exposure? Movements of the models head would bring the light effects on her face in both scenarios.
    I learned the effect of 1st and 2nd curtain sync by flashing a car moving in my direction with headlights switched on in the dark. Flashing 1st curtain would show the car and the headlight trail continues in driving direction. Flashing 2nd curtain leads to the car “pulling” the headlight trails.

  2. are you sure of this??? the 350D can shoot in 2nd curtain with builtin flash… or am I just not up-to-date and don’t know that the 5dm2 doesn’t have a built-in flash? 😀

  3. GrimsditchImages Reply July 9, 2012 at 6:47 am

    I’m afraid I have to disagree with Bryan’s explanation. And the final results are a little bit faked. It does not matter if you use front curtain or rear curtain sync in this situation. If the model is moving, there will be lights crossing over her face regardless of when the flash fires.

    His rear curtain example is simply a photo where she didn’t move, whereas she did move in the front curtain shot.

  4. Thanks. you explained it really well.

  5. 2nd curtain sync is the great failing of the 5d mk2. Can’t use it with out a $500 flash. /sad

  6. There is always a pre-flash when you shoot in TTL mode. It allows your camera/flash to work out the best flash settings and does this while the shutter is still closed. The second flash is the one that’s going off either as the shutter is opening or closing to light the scene.

    You can fire your flash in manual mode to stop the pre-flash but then have to work out the power settings yourself.

  7. you explained it better than mark. nailed it!

  8. Great video, loving this tutorial series. Keep it up Adorama.

  9. Good video, thanks for that information!

    And by the way, Mark and Bryan are the best!

  10. MauroMatacchione Reply July 9, 2012 at 11:13 am

    the first flash is the flash trying to determine how much light is going to have to be flashed. the first flash doesn’t affect the photo in any way 🙂 just the second one

  11. BDJOEcustomvideos Reply July 9, 2012 at 11:16 am


  12. you’re doing it too quick, try a longer exposure,

  13. how did you do it? when i set my camera to rear curtain sync, two flash fires. in the beginning and end of the exposure?

  14. Bryan! I love your works. Keep it up!

  15. Really increased the production value to the quality that a master like Bryan deserves! Thanks Adorama.

  16. 5:00 where is the fuse box ?????  =)

    great tip Bryan Thanks.

  17. ive read your understanding flash book,a great read a may i understand correctly that,using rear/2nd curtain sync to fire a flash,can only be used while camera and flash are set to ttl/e-ttl mode and cannot be used with full manual flash set-up?

  18. Shemaiah Ormandy Reply July 9, 2012 at 2:52 pm

    hi i like it. got a ? do,s Bryan Peterson book come in PDF for those that can not read

  19. on topic I think this rear curtain sync, can’t be explained better than this, I know there was an episode on Digital Photography One on One with Mark, when he explained this, but it wasn’t that obvious(in the photos) because of the faster shutter speed.

  20. dude, mark is at Digital Photography One on One, so at least read the title before comment…

  21. Big fan of Bryan’s videos. This was one of the best explanations of 2nd curtain sync I’ve seen. Thanks very much.

  22. MinusTwoTonsils Reply July 9, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    good explanation though, Bryan!

  23. MinusTwoTonsils Reply July 9, 2012 at 5:00 pm

    wish it was in 720p at least.

  24. Understanding flash photography ebook please!

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