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Painting Iron Man


I was happy that the ‘Macro Light Painting’ worked out well!

Like any good technique, it’s simple to learn, yet provides unlimited variations.

To recap:

  • Shoot in a dark environment so a 30 second exposure is completely black
  • f8 and ISO 100 – Good depth of field and less noise for longer exposure
  • I used a 50mm lens. Longer lens will give you less background to work with if desired
  • We used a stool covered in black material to maximize light drop-off and eliminate reflections (although you can certainly get some creative visuals WITH reflections)
  • Background on ipad was moved behind subject at about 1/3 brightness
  • iPhone provided main light on subject using white screen at maximum brightness
  • ‘rub’ main light all over subject to achieve desired brightness and light effect

All in all, you can achieve some fairly dramatic in-camera effects very easily AND on the cheap. Try ‘er out – see what you can come up with!

And for the record – it’s not a ‘doll’. It’s mother-fucking-iron-man.

Images Note

All images presented within this gallery have minimal Lightroom processing: bumped up the exposure, bumped up the whites, dropped the blacks and nudged up the saturation. So you can argue this is still very much in-camera.

Image 1: The definition of a ‘happy accident’. Although I did not intend to slash the camera with my key-light, the flukey placement worked well within the context of this photo.

Image 2: Purposely ‘waggling’ the background around gave this a more pleasing effect than I would have guessed.

Image 3: Iron Man and butterflies. Watch for it in Iron Man 4. You saw it here first.

Image 4: Probably my favourite image for a couple of reasons. I like the background, but I also think Iron Man is best exposed here. Some of this has to do with colour balance. I was using auto colour balance, and I think that the choice of background colour inversely effects the foreground. Something to keep in mind for next time…

Image 5: Neat. Wrist wasn’t sore at all. Really, I can do that jerking motion with my hand for quite a while.

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