What effect do bright lights have on DSLRs? For example, would shining a flashlight into the lens have any effect?

The flashlight I am currently using is 300 lumens.

  • \$\begingroup\$ How bright is bright? :) \$\endgroup\$ Jan 17, 2015 at 3:38
  • \$\begingroup\$ 300 lumens is what I am using \$\endgroup\$
    – Vanguard66
    Jan 17, 2015 at 3:42
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Add that information to the question please \$\endgroup\$ Jan 17, 2015 at 3:47
  • \$\begingroup\$ Do you mean shining the flashlight on your subject to light it? Or shining the flashlight into the camera's lens? What exactly are you trying to accomplish? \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Jan 17, 2015 at 3:50
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Is there a problem you are trying to solve? Are you getting a poorly exposed image when doing this that you are trying to fix? Do you have an example image? I'm not sure what you are getting at with this question. \$\endgroup\$
    – dpollitt
    Jan 17, 2015 at 4:39

1 Answer 1


A flashlight is similar to other light sources. A camera measures light, so shining a light will affect exposure. When light entering the lens is very strong, some of it will reflect outwards and bounce back and forth between lens elements. This will cause an artifact called Lens Flare. Again, this is not particular to a flash light but will also happen with the sun for other bright source.


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