I have wanted to give painting with light a try for a while. Everyone says it is easy - and they couldn't be more right. It only took about ten shots before I figured out everything and produced a couple of nice results.
You don't need much to do light painting. You just need:
- Your Camera (which is, of course, taking the photo of these items)
- A tripod
- A remote trigger (this probably isn't required but it worked great)
- A light source - my little bendy book light worked great (trial shots with my big mag lite didn't so a focused light is really important I think)
- A really dark night (seriously - way too cold to do this outside today) or a room you can make completely dark. My guest bathroom played that role perfectly tonight.
Taking the shot is as simple as the tools you need:
- Turn the shutter speed down to what I call the manual control - the shutter stays open as long as you keep the shutter button pressed down. On the Nikon you dial it all the way down until it says Bulb.
- Line up the light with the lens.
- Press the shutter button and draw.
- When you're done with your masterpiece, release the shutter button and check your results.
To finish these shots I played with the white balance and exposure control in Light Room to get the background as dark as possible. I'm going to have to try a laser pointer or other colored light sometime to see how that might work but with this little LED guy I got pretty decent whites and blues. Very fun and very easy!