How to do UV UltraViolet Photography Tricks with a Blacklight

Want to really do something different with your photography? I’m not talking about changing angles or adding filters, I mean really different. Psychedelic, funky, neon, blacklight different. All you need is a UV light and a few easy-to-find glow-in-the-dark accessories. Here, photographer Markus Berger demonstrates a few ways to really amp up your photos with different UV lights and products:

UV Lighting

There are a few options here; you can use a simple UV flashlight, a UV lamp, specialized UV heads for your flashes, or a combination of these.

uv lighting types

UV Photo Ideas

1. UV Makeup

There are tons of different UV beauty products available, like nail polish, lipstick, body paints, and hairspray. Have your model decked out in glowing neon makeup for a really cool portrait.

glow in the dark makeup photo

2. Glowing Cocktail

There’s a chemical called fluorescein which glows under UV light and can turn a regular cocktail into an eerie, glowing concoction.

glowing cocktail photo

3. Glow-in-the-Dark Bubbles

You can actually buy UV bubble liquid to add a truly psychedelic look to the scene. Have your UV light source off to the side as you blow bubbles at the model to get this effect.

glowing uv bubbles photo

4. UV Wool

You can find UV wool easily and it lets you get really creative. Weave the wool around your model, or create a web-like background—the possibilities are endless. A little imagination and a ball of wool can go a long way!

uv wool photo

5. UV Holi Powder

Holi powder is probably one of the coolest products you can use to create awesome, dreamy photos. Just throw the dust in the air as you snap the shot and see what happens.

glow in the dark holi powder photo

6. Glowing Hair

Have your model dip their hair in the fluorescein and then whip it around. Whip it backwards, in circles, swing the hair through the air and keep snapping.

glowing hair photo

These are just some ideas to get you started on your next UV photo project. You could also try neon balloons, bracelets, hats, anything to add your own personal touch. Be creative, think differently, and don’t be afraid to experiment.

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