This is just a single strobe on a single bird, with the flash bounced off the ceiling for a softer light. We are separated from the background by chance, and on purpose. … By chance, in that the room has four sides, two of which are twice as close as the wall I chose. … On purpose, I chose the far wall so that the light from the flash would fall off appreciably, leaving the subject well lit, and the background about two stops darker than the subject.
Why do I even mention the distance to the back wall? I have the source light on my person, and the inverse square law says that light will fall off from the source like this. … When you double the distance from the source to the subject, you cut the light to one fourth the amount of light. … So I knew how much the light would fall off between the subject bird, and the subject background wall.