Thousands of Light Painters

Sometimes we get to slow down a bit and have a little fun with our assignments. This was one of those times. With the Tulsa area overtaken by tiny flying lanterns I drew the assignment to make a photograph to accompany the story. 

It took me more than two hours sitting in the pitch dark to make a handful of photos decent enough to turn in. Partially because of the frustration of focusing the dark, but also because the wee things are harder to photograph than you think. It took me so long that the interns who went with me soon tired of me standing around contemplating the assignment while they got bit by the not nearly as friendly mosquitos sharing the airspace with our green glowing subjects.

After they left I took a deep breath and then stepped off the deep end. I used a technique called light painting to make the two photographs you see here. Basically a long exposure (30 seconds) captures the movement of the bugs while bursts from a small flashlight are used to "paint in" the details the photographer chooses (hand, weed, boots etc)  
Now I am off to fetch a little anti-itch gel and some sleep! 


Pan's Pantry said...

I just love the bottom pic.

Nice to see you blogging again.