Posts tagged “light painting

Christmas lights at home

30 second exposure at f/6.3 on ISO 200.  Canon 5D3 camera and a 24mm lens.

Returning from a walk with my hound last night, I decided to take a photograph of the Christmas lights before I take them down this weekend.  The first image was just the scene as it is and I found it a bit bland.  In the second, I kept the shutter open longer so that I could run around with a blue glow stick to light paint in some stars.  A little bling added to the scene made it a bit more fun.


Light painting with glow sticks

Kian looking through light - © Christopher Martin-1430

After a great evening with another family who came over for dinner, we enjoyed having some time playing around before bed.  Kian and Kezia had a bunch of glow sticks that they connected together and swung around in the dark.  We had a lot of fun tracing out crazy patterns during a series of long exposures.

A ball of crazy light - © Christopher Martin-1407

Kian looking through light - © Christopher Martin-1446


Abstracts from LA’s freeways

HOV lane on the 405 - 2013 © Christopher Martin

I spent a bit of time as a passenger traversing the interstate freeways that wind through, over and around Los Angeles during our visit there last week.  Along the way, my twitchy camera finger got the best of me and I ended up getting pulled into the patterns and chaos realized with the help of longer exposures.

Dusk over toll road 73 - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Past one exit and onto another - 2013 © Christopher Martin

I like playing around to see what can be created as the landscape slides by.  With dusk falling in, the warm light played well with the colours in the signs and the vehicles.  Lot’s to play with, not much time to do it though.  It makes it easy to not get stuck on any one subject!  I do really like trying to compose at speed and imagine how the image will look.

Driving by sunset in Laguna - 2013 © Christopher Martin

When we exited onto the Pacific Coast Highway, which is more like a city street than a highway, the speeds slowed down which allowed for more intentional image making in a way.  I liked the sunset image above but grew bored and introduced camera movements to create crazy lines from the lights standing out now against the dark surroundings.  Things started out relatively controlled but then…

Off ramp motion - 2013 © Christopher Martin

… things got a little more wild before the ride ended.

Californian night lights - 2013 © Christopher Martin

We caught the last light on the west coast from our balcony overlooking Aliso Beach.

Over Aliso Beach and on to sunset - 2013 © Christopher Martin


Sparks

We had another play with night shooting the other night. This time we were under a highway overpass with cameras on a service road and the fire spinner up the concrete support that angles up to the bridge. A good spot as there was only concrete and muddy road, offering stray sparks very little opportunity. Click the picture for a small gallery of images from the shoot.

It was a great time thanks to my friends who joined me in shooting and spinning.


Light painting: Experimenting with sparklers, steel wool and a glowing ball

My friend Jeff and I spent some time experimenting with different light sources last night.  Generally referred to as light painting, this is an area of photography that is drawing a lot of people’s creative energy right now.   We confirmed how much fun this can be both to photograph and to play with the light.  We wanted to play around with some of the common tools and see how they worked in practice.  We took turns being the subject (and consequently light-wielder) – Jeff presented great symmetry in his movements which created interesting imagery. By the end, we had learned some things, definitely had fun and now we’re scheming about the images we really want to create.

Note: If you want to see this images larger you can visit this web gallery on my website.

A chaotic globe traced out by a sparkler

This suggested one of the dark creatures from the fantasy genre.  For those who may have played Dungeons & Dragons, this seemed like a Nightshade to me.

Gloves with green, red and blue lights on the fingertips allowed Jeff to trace out arcs that reminded me a little bit of Leonardo da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man drawing .

The photographs are presented in reverse chronological order (because the fiery ones look so cool so I wanted to put them up first).  However, we approached this session with a measure of sanity and worked up from this glowing ball (one of the many balls in my children’s collective inventory) to the more exciting (read: burning) props.  The image above is one of the first in the shoot where I was looking at ambient light in the area, the brightness of the ball and what flash added to (or detracted from) the scene.

The ball illuminates with red and blue LEDs that alternate creating purple tones in a long exposure.  When Jeff was looking at the ball here it was hard not to be reminded of Gollum and “My Precious” from The Hobbit and The Lord Of The Rings.

Definitely my favourite photograph of the evening was with the sparks carving out lines of light.  I converted it to black and white below and that changes the image in a different but, to me, equally interesting manner.


Old Ford Truck: Dusk on the Albertan Prairie

Out at my latest infatuation , this old F350 abandoned beside a country backroad, last night.  The evening light after the sun dropped behind the Rockies was great and with long exposures, light painting with a flash off camera and the steadily darkening sky, I had a great time.

I was so absorbed, I lost track of time and didn’t make it back to Redwood Meadows to enjoy the community fireworks for Canada Day.  I could see the explosions from the truck but with 25 kilometers between me and home, they were just small balls of color.

As night took hold, I finished with a couple of darker images that left more shadow in keeping with the dark sky to the east.