I got the chance to catch up with light painter Wes Whaley recently to ask him a few questions about the tools and technique behind some of his recent images you see here.
LPP ∇ Hey Wes I have seen some of your awesome light painting images like “Electroluminescentness” and “Collective Consciousness” recently and it looks like you have been putting in a lot of work advancing your design tools and technique. Tell me a little bit about your set up for one of these shots.
WW ∇ My set up is a crazy hard to explain tool I made at home. I use a lot of EL Wire a Canon rebel XS.
LPP ∇ Is there anything different about the technique to create one of these images from any other light painting image?
WW ∇ Well it’s different as far as technique it took me a lot of practice to get all the movements the same or as best as I can. The movements of the tool took a while as far as making the distance the same and holding it for a few seconds so the EL would show up better as I have two different types and one is brighter than the other.
LPP ∇ What inspired this tool? Were you trying to create a tool for a specific shot or just experimenting?
WW ∇ Mostly experimenting.
LPP ∇ How long did it take for you to feel like you had it right?
WW ∇ It took me about 4 months to get it where i thought i was getter better at the movements.
LPP ∇ How long does it take to create one of these monsters?
WW ∇ Anywhere for 3 to 5 minutes depends on how many colors i lay down.
LPP ∇ The latest images look like the tool/technique has really evolved, how many have you made now?
WW ∇ I have 35 of this technique.
LPP ∇ What was the most difficult part about creating this light painting tool?
WW ∇ Making the tool lighter is the fun part.
LPP ∇ How long have you been light painting?
WW ∇ Been light painting for 1.5 yrs
LPP ∇ How did you discover light painting?
WW ∇ Through a friend Dennis Calvert an awesome artist!
LPP ∇ Any plans on making a tutorial for the rest of the light painting community to share how you are making these images or will you keep it your own?
WW ∇ I’m working on a tutorial now as a matter of fact.
LPP ∇ Where can people find more of your images?
WW ∇ On my flickr photostream.
LPP ∇ Anything you would like to add?
WW ∇ I love light painting the most because it all in your imagination and also if you were to ask anyone to draw or paint a picture it would take days or weeks. I can set up and shoot a photo in about 10 minutes that is sweet!
LPP ∇ Thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions. We are all looking forward to seeing that tutorial.