As you may have gathered by now photography is not a precise science – for every person that supports one way of doing things there is another that will explain why that way is completely wrong. Available light v artificial light is no different.
Personally, I think there is room for both. So where available light provides me with a fabulous image I will take it but where I think the ambient light could do with a little help I will use a secondary light source and in my case the light source that I use is provided by Nikon’s speedlights. They are in effect very sophisticated flash guns.
Sometimes lighting is so poor that the speedlights act as the primary light source and on other occasions I may simply use them to splash a bit of light on my subject’s face to help fill in the light where there is maybe too much shadow.
I carry 3 speedlights, a commander that allows me to fire the speedlights remotely and 3 lightstands. I also carry a shoot through umbrella, a small portable softbox that can be attached to my on-camera speedlight, a portable snoot /deflector and a 5 in 1 reflector kit.
I also carry a portable on camera video light, battery pack and charger which I occasionally use when lighting conditions for the first dance reach ridiculously low levels or just to add some ‘soft light’.
Oh yes and you need bags, lots of bags to carry all of this equipment around and yes it is heavy – camera equipment is very heavy.