Forget The Built In Flash, Add An External Speedlight
What do we mean by shoe mounted flash photography? Walk around with flashguns on our feet? Of course not, the term “Shoe” comes from Hotshoe or the connection on top of most SLR or advanced compact cameras that can take an external flashgun.
After built-in flash, hot-shoe mounted flash photography is probably the most common. Most decent mid-range cameras and above have a hot shoe for attaching 3rd party flashguns some of which are dedicated to the camera itself.
Dedicated means that the flash and camera have been designed to work together by the same manufacturer. This makes full auto or E-TTL flash photography as simple as possible.
On the photo above, you can see a series of round points on the hot shoe connection. The large point will actually fire any flashgun attached to it, but the smaller points connect only to the dedicated flashgun for this camera.
Which Flashgun is Good for MY Camera
This all depends on the make of your camera. If you had a Canon, I would suggest that you BUY a Canon flashgun, the same for Nikon and so on.
If the manufacturer of your camera DOESN’T make flashguns, then I suggest you either read the camera’s manual, or go to some of the forums or review sites. There are normally people out there with the same question as you that have already answered it.
I have covered hotshoe mounted flash photography and how to use the hotshoe and external flashguns in my other flash photography pages.