Light Painting

Close encounters with the HP17


Coast recently sent me some of their latest flashlights to try out. I was excited about the HP17 because it looked like a good mix of power, size, and affordability. What’s the first thing I do with it? Tape it to my chest!

The photo was exposed for 9 seconds @ f/2.8, ISO6400. Why the wide open settings? Well, the water was pretty damn cold and I was trying to minimize the amount of shivering visible by shortening the exposure as much as possible. There are compromises in every photo ever taken. I used my hiking shoes as a wedge to make the HP17 point away from me at an angle (see below photos for the duct tape and shoe mess that’s stuck to me).  I backlit myself with a wirelessly triggered flash to help bring out some of the foreground and make a nice hard light around me which would make any small movements during the exposure a little more forgiving.  The flash is also why ripples in the water are frozen, rather than having the satiny smooth appearance you usually see in long exposures.


My friend, Jody, triggered the camera. He was the subject of the photo in the last blog post.

G46A5020 coast hp 17 light painting