Fotorgear - 06/05/2018

An all-in-one Light Painting Stick for Light Painting Photography

The light painting community has been growing throughout the last few years. This form of photography, once only used by professional photographers and visual artists has become increasingly popular amongst amateur photographers and recreational photographers. One primary reason for the rapid development of the light painting photography industry, is the accessibility of the equipment necessary. More and more footgear and light painting sticks are available on the market, and amongst them, I believe, Magilight to be the most professional tool and easiest to use.

With the use of an all-in-one light painting stick, everyone can create light painting images. By learning one step at a time you will be able to create incredible lightpainting shots. Today I’m going to share with you my usual approach to light painting photography, and talk about how I customize my light paintings with Magilight.

Must have items for Light Painting Photography:

If you have only used the automatic mode on your camera, it is time to explore the manual camera settings! I recommend carefully reading the owner’s manual of your camera, and looking at the functions and settings listed in your manual. The three items that you must have for light painting photography are listed below:

DSLR Camera:

Manual settings are necessary. I suggest that you check the camera’s manual to see if the ranges for shutter speed, aperture, and ISO listed below are available.

I personally prefer using a digital camera, so that I can view the images immediately and adjust any necessary settings. A digital camera also supports RAW image formats which makes editing the photos easier.

A tripod:

A tripod is a very important tool for light painting photography so that you can avoid camera movement. By using a tripod you prevent the camera from shaking during long exposure photographs, and help the camera to remain focused on the light source. Using a tripod can also help you capture a wide range of angles.

A Light Source (Magilight recommended)

Even though you can use common light sources like flashlights, pen lights, or LED lights as the light source for your photography, using an all-in-one light painting stick like Magilight is the easiest and most professional tool to improve your light painting photography. Magilight will simply bring your paintings to a new level. With its innovative 144 high-resolution RGB LEDs, it powerfully reflects GB hue, contrast, and flickering from the controller to get customized and vibrant colours and images.

Steps for Creating your 1st Light Painting

1. Set up your DSLR camera on a sturdy tripod with remote attached.
2. Simply upload an image to Magilight.
3. Set your camera to manual mode, ideally aperture f/11, ISO 100and exposure of 30 seconds.
4. Image stabilization on your lens should be on.
5. ISO should be 100 or 200
6. If your light painting photograph is taken indoor, turn off all the lights. Open the shutter of your 7. Camera to begin the long exposure.
8. Simply wave your Fotorgear Magilight.
9. Focus using the Magilight– then lock your focus. 

Three Basic Techniques

Basically, there are three Light Painting Photography Techniques, but these techniques can be combined or modified, you can easily customize your light painting photography by using an all-in-one light painting stick.

The On-Camera Light Source:

This technique is used in producing a light painting photograph where the element from the all-in-one light painting stick can be seen by your camera. To leverage this technique you need to stand in front of the camera during a long exposure photograph, then use Magilight to create some colourful drawing.

The Off Camera Light Source:

This technique is used in producing a light painting photograph where the element from Magilight cannot be seen by your camera. To leverage this technique you need to stand behind the camera during a long exposure photograph, then use Magilight to project light in order to create some colourful design.

Kinetic Light Painting Photography:

This technique is used in producing a light painting photograph where the Magilight stays stationary, and the camera moves around to create the drawings. Simply hold the camera in your hands, and use a slow shutter speed. Then, use the Magilight to produce the painting. If you have a camera rotation tool, you can try spinning your camera in a 360’ circles, to produce a really neat moonlight affect.

Personally, I prefer Magilight rather than the Pixelstick. The main reasons being that Magilight is easy to use, customizable, and produces professional results. You can also upload and paint your own BMP image. Overall I find it really user-friendly: you can learn how to use it just within five minutes.

Net Weight1 kg3kg
Battery 2 lithium batteries8 alkaline battery
Battery Type26350AA
Input7.4 V16V
Battery Life>8 hours>6 hours
LCD Resolution128*64128*64
LED Number144200
LED Density144/M107/M
LED Lifespan100K hours100K hours
Splicing SupportNoYes
Storage CardMicro SDSD
File Format24-bit bmp24-bit bmp
Splash ProofIPX4IPX1
Wireless TriggerInternalExternal
Ways of TriggerYesNo
Trigger CameraYesYes
Rotatable HandleYesNo
Angle Adjustable HandleYesNo
Slide Railway/Tripod AdaptableYesNo
Visible Cable13
File SystemYesYes
File Format DisplayYesYes
Progress DisplayYesNo
Direct SettingYesNo
Light Painting DirectionYesYes
Blink GradeYesNo
Contrast CorrectionYesNo
Colour ModeYesNo
Colour PresetYesNo
RGB ValueYesNo
Sound AlertYesNo
LCD ControlYesYes
Wireless ButtonYesYes
Language ChoiceYesYes

Practice and Keep Experimenting

Adjust your camera’s settings if needed, in order to create a desirable result. Once you have familiarized yourself with these steps, keep practicing. The more time that you spend experimenting with light painting photography, the more incredible your results will be.

Article credit : Heidi Cohen ( )

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