How to “paint” photos with light | Digital Photo | Macworld

September 18, 2009

Normally, when you take a photo, the shutter opens for a fraction of a second, light hits the image sensor, and the moment is frozen as a photograph. Light painting is different. With light painting, you take your photographs in darkness, leaving the shutter open for long periods, and then manipulate points or beams of light in front of the lens. Each light painting can take minutes or even hours, depending on the effect you want. Such a long exposure allows you to use flashlights and other sources of light to “paint” in midair and pick out objects that you want to appear in the photograph.

This technique will open up a whole new avenue of artistry in your photography, and the effect is surreal.

[This article is an excerpt from the book, “Photojojo!: Insanely Great Photo Projects and DIY Ideas” (2009)]

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