How to Create a Wall of Fire with Light Painting Photography

It seems that every day photographers are coming up with new ways to experiment with light painting. It’s certainly one of those things that has a lot of potential for creativity for those who think outside of the box. But fire painting has to be one of the coolest (and most dangerous) ideas I have seen yet. In this tutorial, Barry Elder shows you how to use fire as a tool in light painting:

Though the effects are quite amazing, the first thing that should be going through your head when even thinking about trying something like this is safety. Attempting a technique like this without properly preparing is just asking for disaster. Remember when your parents said don’t play with fire? Well the same things goes for adults: DON’T PLAY WITH FIRE.

lightpainting firewall

Final composite of fire painting images

Now that we’re clear on that, let’s take a look at some of the final images that Van Elder Photography has produced. Though some of them may be naturally lit by the fire, it looks as though the majority of his shots would have to be composite images.

wall of fire light painting

Wall of Fire (Click to see full size on VanElder Photography.)

One photo for the fire lighting in the background and one for lighting the car with strobes in the foreground. With a slow shutter speed for the first photo, the fire slinger can move across the frame with a flaming rope and basically create a wall of fire as a result of the motion blur.

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One Comment

  1. Flaming rope with steel is way fun at night. I love shooting stuff like this, but I see others camera settings and I leave my shutter open waayyyy longer than most.
    – M

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