Black Light is Alright


Use one of those pen sized black lights for more than checking I.D.!

Basically what you do is a little fun light writing. The technique requires you to get a pinpoint style black light which are easy to find and usually are available with laser pointers as an accessory. (Sidenote: people who work in bars in America use these lights to check for fake IDs). Anyway, the technique is pretty simple, get a camera with a B setting, a tripod, a long cable release, and a room without light. Post up against the wall and aim the black light straight out in front of you. Move the thing to create whatever design you want and close the shutter when you are done.

The brilliant thing though is that this allows you to be pretty precise in your light writing because of the fact that the black light doesn’t expose the film that much and therefore you can be much slower in your movements without the danger of over exposure. If you tried the same thing with a LED flashlight you would have far too much light (believe me I have tried) If you try with a laser pointer you get too little light (I tried and failed with that too). The black light allows you to be so slow and free that you can even use your body as a template to space out your movements.

As you can see I am no artist but I was pretty successful at creating all manner of Halloween-y images with this technique and I think they generally look pretty good—-skeleton, witch, bat, moon, angry cat, jack-o-lantern, frankenstein with neck bolts etc. So anyways you should try this junk out of and please could someone finish up my halloween theme? I still need ghost, mummy, zombie, freddie, jason, etc..

written by kylethefrench on 2009-10-31 #gear #tutorials #cable-release #tripod #long-exposure #tips #tipster #b-setting #light-writing #black-lights


  1. stouf
    stouf ·

    Perfect ! Great advises from the master of light painting ! The skeleton is insane !

  2. torium
    torium ·

    That's cool ! I'm definitely going to give that a try !

  3. lomosexual_manboy
    lomosexual_manboy ·

    Great technique. These albums are always fun to look through.

  4. juznobsrvr
    juznobsrvr ·

    thanks for the tip

  5. -a-l-b-e-r-t-o-
    -a-l-b-e-r-t-o- ·


  6. herbert-4
    herbert-4 ·

    Thank you muchly!! I love this idea!!

  7. quaisoir
    quaisoir ·

    love ur light painting!!!

  8. delina
    delina ·


  9. dudizm
    dudizm ·

    great process...

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