A set of industrial images I recently created for PGI.
Light PaintingDennis Calvert Light Painting and Photography
A recent music video I created for Munook. The entire thing was shot with a Canon 5DmkIII & 50mm f/1.4.
New promo images for their upcoming 2013 tour. Last year they played along side for My Darkest Days, Trapt, Crossfade, Zack Myers of Shinedown, Fuel, Mark Tremonti, Sevendust, and several other acts. These guys are well on their way to being rock stars. You listen to their EP, which I also did the album art for, on bandcamp.
Recent product shots for Straight To Ale. I used strobes rather than flashlights to light the bottles because I needed precise repeatable lighting from bottle to bottle. Sparklers, modified flashlights, and a variety of glows ticks were used for the light painting effects.
My wife and I were allowed to photograph SAR training (search and rescue) and wander through the buildings at the abandoned Tennessee state prison. Besides photographing the training and the prison, we were also part of the training. We both were asked to hide in inside of buildings and a guard tower and the dogs practiced by seeking us out. It was very impressive. The day gave me a new appreciation of our local search and rescue teams. They are dedicated people who make a real difference in the community.
I really dig fog. A lot. A whole hell of a lot actually. I even wrote about using it in long exposure photography a few months ago.
For this one, the idea was simple and the execution was fast. It’s only a 14 second exposure. Here’s how it went down.
First off, I set up a speedlite (@ 1/4 power) with a wireless trigger about 25ft in front of the camera. I zoomed the flash out to 24mm to get a nice wide dispersion of light through the fog, and set it to trigger on the first curtain.
Next, I triggered the camera (I use the rc-1 remote) with a 2 second delay and timed my jump with the flash. It was really a pretty pathetic jump, but the back lighting threw my shadow out in front of me and made it look like I really got some air.
Finally, I held a hula hoop with el wire taped to it in front of the camera and moved it away from the lens three or four feet.
That was it. The photo is a jpg straight out of the camera.
Camera geek info:
Canon 5d mk3 & 24-70L
Here’s the light I used. Disregard the paint roller and stick the hoop is stuck to. I just used the hoop with the blue el wire for the photo. This was something I taped together a couple of years ago. I could have taken the time to make sure the el wire was all pretty and perfectly lined up around the rim of the hoop (which would have made a complete circle of blue around me), but I decided to leave it crooked and uneven. Sometimes you get a little more spice when things aren’t perfect.
You can light up particles in the air for a snazzy effect. The photos below were done by shining a powerful focused light into the air in various weather conditions during a long exposure. You need a light source that outputs some major power to pull off the effect. I used a Coast HP21 and a 3000 lumen Stanley spotlight for these shots.
In all the photos but the last, the light was rotated at a central point and left on for 3-4 seconds in each position before shutting it off and pointing it at a different angle.
Humid summer night
Flour was thrown into the air while the subject was back lit. All-purpose and self-rising seem to work the same
Electroluminescent wire (el wire for short) has been used by light painting artists for several years. It’s most common use is creating a glowing smokey effect (ex. 1). A less common use is mounting it onto objects and creating defined shapes and patterns (ex 2).
ex 1: For this photo, blue el wire was taped onto a long stick to get the plumes of light so far above the head of the subject. It was also shot under a full moon which helped light up the environment. A flash light was also used to light behind the subject and the limbs in the center top of the composition.
This was shot on a moonless night and a small flash light was used to light the trees behind the subject.
A: el wire taped onto bare copper wire. I used clear scotch tape so the light would be visible in the taped areas. The copper wire attached to the wheel by twisting it around the spokes . It’s important to make sure the “arms” are very secure and don’t wobble.
B: PVC pipe wrapped with black electrical tape. The el wire was wrapped around the pipe so it would be visible as the rig turned 360 degrees. Again, clear tape was used to hold the el wire in place.
C: A bike wheel. I removed the tire from it and painted it black with spray paint.
D: An old aluminum tripod painted black. I fastened the wheel to the head of it.
Uncropped version of the above image.
And here’s the final product. The eyes were lit with a string of battery operated LEDs stuffed into the gas mask. The only environment lighting was a canon speedlite 430ex II fired through the window directly into the subject’s back. There was enough bounced light from the interior of the building to add some fill to the front of the subject. If you look carefully, you can see the faint blue lines below the light shape which were the tripod legs reflecting the light from the el wire. Perfection is so elusive
In addition to creating 3-D shapes with el wire, you can also make some pretty cool 2-D patterns. I taped el wire onto a piece of foamboard and then attached it to my circle maker. I then moved the board around in consistent increments, holding each position for a second or two to burn in the el wire pattern.
Here’s an example of the rig. It’s not the exact pattern I used for the photos below, but you get the idea.
Test shot in the yard.