Thursday, December 4, 2014

The Newbie - Painting with light - follow the path of a light

We got pretty enthusiastic about this painting with light idea.  The internet is full of great how to videos.  We decided to use torches to paint some light trails.
We met indoors at night and covered the windows so the room was dark.  Everyone turned up with a torch, coloured or clear - there were lots of varieties and you can find coloured torches at novelty stores or camping suppliers.  We set up our cameras on a tripod in the darkened room.  OK it wasn't dark yet - because we had to set up for the photo.

Once again we want the camera to have a long shutter speed - in this case we used either 15 or 30 seconds because we are going to move a light around and capture its path.  If the path is complex we need a longer time to finish it or the photo finishes and we are still trying to finish the pattern.  We focussed the camera and set the ISO low to concentrate on the light path rather than the background - 400 for this shot.  Again we want the whole area of the photo in focus so the aperture is about f/11.

Now the lights go off and on the count of three our intrepid club member (ICM) turned on one red and one blue torch and waved them around in the dark.  After 15 seconds we get an image of the path of the lights!

My photo had a lot of background light with a slight red glow.  We were a bit confused about this but eventually worked out that one of the group had an infrared focussing light on her camera. Makes a nice touch doesn't it?  We have other pictures that captured just the pattern but I kind of like this one.

This photo was taken in the same way but with an ICM standing still in the darkened room with another club member turning on a torch and tracing around the ICM so that the camera could capture the light path and a little of the light reflection.  Cropped and cleaned up this is almost a saintly figure captured with just a torch and 30 second shutter speed!

Of course there were a lot of false starts with the camera stopping before the path was complete, the torch light missing in some of the path but that's the fun of it isn't it?

I recommend a chap who has some great techniques and shares loads of information in very informative videos.  Check his youtube channel  If only Santa would buy his book for me......

Maybe we can join:

or get a few friends together for this

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