Ontario Journalist, Writer, Photography & Filmmaker

Creative Light Sculpture – A Commercial Assignment

I was engaged by a client that had done a redesign at a radio station – all of the office areas, public spaces and broadcast studios.

If you have ever been in a radio broadcast studio, these are not large spaces. The lighting is typically not great because it doesn’t need to be. This can present a challenge to photograph.

There was not room to bring lighting on stands into this studio. Instead, I took a base exposure to begin. I had a radio trigger transmitter/receiver set on my camera and speed light. I set the power of the speedlight to about 1/8. I used a wireless remote camera trigger and a smartphone app to trigger the camera and flash unit. I walked around the studio and popped flash in areas where I wanted to provide additional lighting, or to highlight certain aspects of the space. I wouldn’t have wanted to bring larger lights in even if I could because they would have overpowered the space and I wanted as much of the natural character to remain as possible.

Once back in my office, I loaded the base exposure and all of the other images with the flash popped into layers in Photoshop. There were 14 image layers in all. Next, I applied masks to each of the flash layers and began painting in where I wanted the light to be placed. This is more precise than typical light painting, which is why I call it light sculpture. By masking in the light from the flash gradually, I could place as much light as I wanted exactly where I wanted.

Below is the base exposure I started with. After that are a couple of the speed light shots and a screen shot showing the layers in Photoshop. The white areas on each layer are the parts that are permitted to show and make up a part of the final composite image.

The finished composite image is shown below. The additions of the flash exposures is subtle, but evident, adding depth and highlighting the tools of the trade.

Creative Light Sculpture – A Commercial Assignment, RF-Photography

Are you in need of a photographer who will work with you to showcase your work in its best light? Contact me on (289)240-0949, or fisher(at)rf-photography.ca to discuss.