Digital Photography Tip Number 30....Light Painting or painting with light for cool lighting effects

Tip #30) Paint with light for cool lighting effects.... To get really cool looking lighting effects for flowers or other subjects, try lighting them up with a technique called light painting or painting with light.

Digital photography tip number 30, Light Painting or painting with light for cool lighting effects. This orange rose was lit using this light painting technique. The shutter speed was 30 seconds, aperture was F/32, ISO number was 100, and the 28-200mm lens was set at 70mm. To see a larger version of the photo, please click on the digital photo.

The basic technique is simple but you might have to experiment a little to get it right. You setup a flower or something so it doesnt move, and then mount your camera on a tripod.

Set your cameras color balance to incandescent or set it with a custom white balance.

Set your cameras shutter speed to 30 seconds and its aperture to F/32 or something similar, and the ISO to the lowest setting like 100.

Dim the lighting in the room, it doesn't have to be dark but just dim so you can see. You will be lighting the flower with a flashlight, so you don't need much other light.

Next you hit the shutter button and start lighting the flower with the flashlight, moving it around the flower and making sure you don't put the flashlight in the photo frame. You will have to experient for awhile before you get it right. Give it less light or more light, until you get it perfect.

The flower below was lit using this technique. The red streaks of light are created by putting my thumb over the flashlight end and passing it in front of the camera.

The results from this photography lighting technique can be very cool. It takes some experimenting, but it is fun and you will be amazed at what unique lighting effects you can get from this, compared to if you just used a flash. So try it out and let me know if you have any questions or comments. Have fun!