The Complete Guide For Shooting Spirograph Light Paintings

Oct 15, 2015

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

The Complete Guide For Shooting Spirograph Light Paintings

Oct 15, 2015

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

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light-painting-spirograph-05

Spirographs are a unique form of light painting where a mesmerizing patterns is being light painting into the sensor. It is kinda the adult version of this kids art game. Interestingly, Spirographs are really easy to create and only require a flashlight, a camera and a dark room.

Jason D. Page just put together a complete guide on creating those magical being. Here is a quick 3 steps guide followed by Jason’s full guide.

1. Create a Light Source

Jason uses a Coast G26 flashlight mounted with a Light Pen but you can also use cheap LEDs and cover them with some tape to make them a point light source. Then hang the light from a tall spot (your significant other would love hanging these from the living room chandelier).

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2. Position the camera

Position the camera directly under the light, and make sure it is 100% horizontal. If you used the previous tip and hang the light from the chandelier, the coffee table would make a great tripod

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3. shoot

Set the camera on ISO 100, F16 and bulb mode (mileage may vary depending on how strong the flash light is). cover the lens with a piece of board. Make sure the room is dark and start your exposure. Then cover the lens, stop the exposure and turn the lights back on.

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remember, as long as the lens is covered with a card, you can switch the lights to create Spirograph with 2 or three colors.

Here is a more complete guide if you want all the small things that you have to look after:

We are curious to see what you can come up with, till then, here are some creative Spirograph from Jason

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[Light Painting Tutorial, Spirographs | Jason D. Page]

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Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

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5 responses to “The Complete Guide For Shooting Spirograph Light Paintings”

  1. Fuego Pazzo Avatar
    Fuego Pazzo

    the article doesn’t mention motion. Isn’t motion required?

  2. Rick Avatar
    Rick

    I would think a true technogeek could have a really good time with this one. Tying a variable RGB LED and a gyro/accelerometer module to an arduino you could have the color of the light changing with the pendulum’s movement around the arc.

  3. Steven Vacher Avatar
    Steven Vacher

    I did a whole load of these https://flic.kr/s/aHsjDGCtkZ using an LED torch, most were 30 second long exposures

  4. Patrick Shipstad Avatar
    Patrick Shipstad

    I’m excited to try this technique and integrate it into some fashion photography. I bought the Pixel Stick but haven’t tried that yet. This was a great tutorial, thanks so much. Now I have to visit your store!

  5. Patrick Shipstad Avatar
    Patrick Shipstad

    I just received the universal adaptor and the light pen in the mail.. I’m excited to “put my spin” on this technique (sorry I had to pun) The tutorial is super helpful, thanks again :-)