Painting with Light Photography

Painting with Light Photography

Image by Spencer Martinez

Painting with Light is a fun techique that photographers use to illumnate the subject. This works best when it is dark. It is made by moving a light source over the subject while taking a long exposure image. A few ideas for  painting with light: Portraits, film, still life, and landscapes.
This techique is filled with uncertainty and lots of experimenting. To get the disired results use the manual mode on your DSLR camera. The image outcome depends on how long the light is on its souce, the distance from the subject and how the light is moved over the subject. A large scene my require several different and separate exposures. A small scene may only require one long exposure. There are several tools that you will need for this type of shoot.

Basic tools need to paint with light

Various flash lights and sizes
DSLR camera
Extra fully charged camera batteries
Cable release or remote trigger
An assistant

Start with a small then move onto bigger scenes.

The light source can be a big flash light or a pinlight . A big flash light will illuminate a wider area. A pinlight will produce small streaks of light.

Painting with Light Photography

Image by Spencer Martinez

Camera setting for long exposre depend the ambient lighting conditions when shooting outside. to control how long the shutter is open it is best to shoot in bulb mode. Other setting like aperature and ISO can be adjusted depending on the scene.
Shutter speed can be between 10 seconds to several minutes.
Aperature can also vary between F11 and F22. This depends on the type of lens you are using. Adjust it as needed.
ISO can be set at 100 or 200. this will reduce the noise in the image. A higher ISO can create more noise in the image.

A tripod is essential to maintain the sharpness of the image and it will reduce the shake of the camera

Cable release of remote trigger with help to reduce the shake in the camera. The slightest movement will cause blur.

Grab your camera, a flashlight, tripod and create some art by painting with light.

Follow these links to learn more about painting with light photography

Light Painting

Landscape Painting with Light

Have Fun!

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