2. Use a diffuser
Holding a diffuser between your light source and subject softens harsh light dramatically and reduces contrast so that there’s detail in shadowy areas and highlights are far less harsh.
There are lots of diffusers available on the market and most pack down to make them easy to transport.
There are models that fold down small enough to fit into a camera bag, but pop-up large enough to be of use when shooting portraits.
The problem, however, is that you need to hold the diffuser somehow and not all of us have a willing assistant.
The simplest solution is to support your camera on a tripod, leaving you free to hold the diffuser.
In addition, there are clamps such as the Wimberley Plamp II available to attach a diffuser to a tripod or other support and hold it over a subject.
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