Jordan Kjome presents a surprising and fascinating collection of light paintings. Learn more about his unusual technique by visiting his website.
Light-Painting Photography: A unique and creative style of photography occurring at night that utilizes a single long-exposure and the illumination of subject matter by use of handmade light tools. Each photograph comes off the camera as-is, and involves no post-processing.
I made my first camera purchase in 2012 after being inspired by examples of long-exposure light-painting photography. Upon experimenting, I discovered the vast possibilities of creating art utilizing a long-exposure and handmade light tools as my instruments to “paint a landscape with light.”
I’ve created many unique light tool designs in an attempt to achieve new illumination results. Simple light tools may consist of a flashlight and a colored gel filter, while other light tool designs feature microprocessor-controlled LED’s and fiber optics.
Designing and building light tools is an interesting challenge, but has proved to be enjoyable. During the many hours that I have spent experimenting in pitch-dark locations, I have gained a better understanding of the properties of light and have learned how I can manipulate my tools in order to achieve my visions.
By wearing all black and working in the pitch dark, I am able to move about and illuminate select objects with my light tools. It is important for me to wear all black to prevent my body from showing up in my photographs.
Because my environment must be dark, I must possess an ability to memorize my surroundings. This is necessary to achieve accurate illumination in the photograph, and more importantly to prevent injury while working around cliffs and bodies of water.
I typically create hundreds of test shots as I experiment and perfect my techniques before ending up with the final photograph. Each of my light-painted photographs has an average exposure time of 1 to 30 minutes. Because I do not manipulate my photographs after they are created, I often spend many hours attempting a shot until I am satisfied.
Memorizing where my light tool has illuminated the photograph is often the hardest part of light-painting, especially when some light-paintings require using many different light tools over the course of a half an hour exposure.
The landscapes and objects that I choose to light-paint often have features about them that stand out to me, but may not be so obvious to others. It is often my goal to reveal these features to the viewer.
I can illuminate select components, shapes or textures of an object utilizing my light tools, or leave out parts of the landscape by not casting light onto them. This allows me to make these features stand out to the viewer, and to paint my vision with light.
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