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Light Painting Photography

Posted by Daniel S. | Found in: Secondary

So, what is light painting? It is a photography technique using long exposures and dark settings to make a cool result using sources of light for effect.

You can do this with any DSLR camera or any camera that has a manual setting, you need a steady tripod and a light source like a torch, sparkler or other light source. You can use cellophane to change the colour, the main limit is your imagination.

When you set your camera for this, change it to Manual Mode (M) so you have the most control of the outcome. Set a low shutter speed such as 30 seconds or bulb depending on the environment, effect desired and light availability. Note: bulb is when you press the button to open the exposure and again to close it creating custom exposures.

If possible ensure that you apeture is wide to allow enough light in to the camera. Then set your ISO low as able, such as 400 to reduce camera 'noise' but enough to capture light sources.

Check to make sure you are shooting in RAW. This way when you edit them you are achieving better results during post production for the world to see.  

Take photographs night or in a dark environment ensuring that your torch/similar an adequate light source, otherwise overexposed images will eventuate. If possible when shooting outdoors head to  low light pollution areas away from the city and industrial lights. Unless that’s the effect you want.

This is a guide and hopefully some inspiration who are looking to become more creative and advance their photography skills. Play around with your settings, as each project may require adustments for the best results. 

You can write a word or try draw a picture. There are spiral ones too but get creative and experiment. Here are a few examples that I did in my backyard.