Photography is all about the light, finding it, playing with it, creating it, enhancing it... but painting it!! That's a whole heap of different fun. Find a dark space, a few bits of kit and something with a light source, then crank your imagination into high gear and start enjoying painting with light. I did my very first light painting with a mini LED torch in 2007, Ive learnt lots since then and used the technique to make creative images for clients. I've used it on people's wedding nights, and had lots of fun with guests also helping out. I've painted with sparklers, head torches, led lights, light sabres, and even (and most dangerous) a big ball of wire wool on fire! The potential for individual creativity and unique results really appeals to me.
The light painting in these images were taken using my home-made, 6 white LED light-stick and a colour changing light sabre.
The set up also used strobe, remote triggers, remote shutter release, and a 15 second exposure was set on most of these shots.
Kat had booked me to run this lightpainting session, after seeing my work. She says 'I saw Sharon create some fantastic lightpaintings at a friend's wedding and really fancied learning the technique myself as there seem to be endless things you can do with it: different subjects, lights, shapes,... As part of my 1:1 tutoring with Sharon, I therefore asked if we could maybe try it out and of course Sharon was up for it straight away. The evening was just brilliant! The three of us had so much fun posing and painting with different lights; every time the shutter went, we raced each other to the camera to be the first to see the result."
With camera on tripod and my strobe on a light stand, it was a case of firing by remote release, whilst I ran into my composed shot to paint around the couple. Here is the first frame, Id fired the remote shutter release in error, so Kat and James waved their headtorch around, not wanting to waste this frame (well once that shutter went we did have a full 15 seconds and felt the need to use it)
This image below is the result of me walking behind James waving my 6 LED light stick up and down.
Once the test shots were done, I let Kat fire the shot and paint the light, using her willing other half as our model!
This shot is lit by both me and Kat, I did the crown, heart and body outline and Cat did the 'Heart monitor bleep'
You can see me wielding my light stick in this one below, and notice I didnt paint all the way across...so increased the exposure time.
The fun thing about experimenting, is you really can play with the lights and effects, by tweaking small details or your movment. Ideas pop into your head and the results are immediate. Such an exhilerating technique to try.
Kat said "Tiny changes, like the source of light or the amount of time, make such a difference, which makes the technique really exciting and the results surprising every time. Many of my friends have since commented on how fabulous they find the pictures we created. They certainly are an eyecatcher and I can't wait to experiment some more!'
When you've got your exposure, composition, flash power and everything else just right, well that feels and looks just great.
If you've got an idea for a light painting shoot, I'd love to hear about it...please get in touch.