Scroll Top

AutoPhotography – Lightpainting

In early 2021 I was approached by Camera nu for a possible collaboration for their upcoming theme week around the theme of car photography. Now that is of course a far-from-my-bed theme for a nature and wildlife photographer…or is it?
It turned out to be a combination of car photography and light painting. A subject I know a lot about!

At the first contact I was sent an example video. The photographer in question in this video added light accents on and behind a car in 7 photos. The well-exposed parts of these individual photos were then combined in Photoshop into 1 appealing image. Of course you can also take these different images over and over again until you are satisfied with a certain exposure.
A piece of cake and for me personally no challenge at all. In addition, I have a healthy aversion to too much Photoshop work. So that had to be different!
The condition for our collaboration was therefore to make a video in which I captured all light elements, no less than 8 pieces in this case, in one image.
A tough challenge that I gladly accepted as a Master of Light.

Car photography and Lightpainting
Pentax 645Z - DFA 28-45mm - ISO 100 - F7.1 - 26s
Automotive Light Painting
Pentax 645Z - DFA 28-45mm - ISO 100 - F7.1 - 35s

Of course I already have some years of experience with the technique of lightpainting, but I had never worked with a car as a model before. Now a car is of course a lot easier as a model because it doesn't matter whether a shutter speed is 5 seconds or 2 minutes, that car will stay put...
My top model Margreet can stand still for about 25 seconds in the right conditions, but working with a car provides more peace of mind because you can work with even longer exposures.

For this shoot I chose to use a varied mix of Nanlite LED lights in the form of the Forza 60 and Pavotubes, White and colored TL sleeves with Niteecore flashlights, some decorative fireworks and of course the parking lights of the car. All this combined with the remaining ambient light.
As you can see in the video, I start with a basic lighting and then add additional light step by step until I am satisfied with the overall image.

Do you want to get started with this yourself? I like to take care of one workshop tailor-made around the theme of car photography and light painting. Do you perhaps have a special car that you would like to put in the spotlight? I can of course be booked for a private session where we use your car as the subject!

Leave a comment