Light Painting - Birmingham, AL Photographer

I have received several questions about my light painting technique lately so I thought I'd answer those questions here on my blog:)

The technique:  I have one speedlight camera left in slave mode and one speedlite in hand along with a small flashlight (Nebo 5581 220 Lumen Redline Tactical Flashlight Strobe S.O.S) for most of the images below.  There are a few where I use a sparkler instead of a flashlight;) I have my camera set up on a tripod with a manual shutter release attached. I then auto-focus on the model, then change the lens to manual focus. When ready, I release the shutter just before painting with my light of choice. Once complete, I position my self camera right and fire my speedlight at the model before going back to close the shutter. Camera settings and time of day may vary, but if there is any light in the sky you should be running with the light:) The settings for each image are listed below.

One or two of these images may be a composite of two. For example, in the first image I liked the lighting on the model better and the light painted in another one so I combined those two images.

The equipment:  camera on tripod, flashlight/sparklers, one or two off-camera speedlites, manual trigger, light stand.


Settings: Bulb mode, 14 sec, F14, ISO 400, 16mm (16-35mm/f2.8L)light painting


Settings: Bulb mode, 19 sec, F9, ISO 160, 23mm (16-35mm/f2.8L) 2014-02-28_0002 2014-02-28_0003


Settings: Bulb mode, 22 sec, F8, ISO 160, 40mm (24-70mm/f2.8L)2014-02-28_00052014-02-28_0004


Settings: Bulb mode, 37 sec, F7.1, ISO 250, 24mm (24-70mm/f2.8L)2014-02-28_0006


My first ever light painting was at my very first wedding, pictured below!! I didn't do it "right", but it was a start. I did not have any speedlites on me for this shot so there is a lot of blur on the couple. Plus, there was some light coming from a street lamp. Don't let the car fool you, this image was shot in 2011:)

Settings: Manual mode, 4 sec, F16, ISO 200, 66mm (24-70mm/f2.8L) - Heart drawn by couple2014-02-28_0007