Posts Tagged ‘dark’

Maleficent-Themed Wedding Shoot Puts a Dark Disney Twist on the ‘Fairytale Wedding’


There are those who want nothing more than a fairytale wedding. And then there are those who want the kind of fairytale wedding that includes a substantial dose of darkness. This crazy wedding photo shoot inspired by Disney’s Maleficent falls very decisively into the latter of these categories.

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Into Eternity: A Poignant Black & White Time-Lapse Dedicated to a Man Who Took His Life

In September of 2012, while shooting a long exposure series at the Ben Franklin Bridge in Philadelphia, photographer Bruce Wayne saw a man take his own life. This experience weighing heavily on his mind, Wayne later set out to capture a long-exposure time-lapse of City Center Philadelphia that would paint the city in a darker light.

He wanted to shoot a time-lapse that might capture an inkling of, “what the city must have felt like and looked like” to the man on that fateful day. Read more…

Dark Sky Finder Helps Nighttime Photographers Find the Least Light Polluted Spots

Screen Shot 2014-10-03 at 10.49

For those of you who partake in any sort of nighttime photography, it’s no secret that light pollution can be the bane of your existence. Thankfully, there’s a neat, simple online resource that can help you better prepare to avoid this enemy of great Milky Way photography.

It’s called Dark Sky Finder, and it’s an easy-to-use website that gives you an up-to-date, radar-style view of what light pollution across the United States looks like.

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The Dark and Dreamy Portraiture of Sylwia Makris


There are few enough times when the words haunting and portraiture truly go hand-in-hand, but the work of Polish-born, Germany-based fashion photographer Sylwia Makris fits this description perfectly.

Her dreamlike photographs take you into a strange, twisted world full of sculpted subjects under the most mysterious of lights and costumes. Read more…

The Darkest Material on the Planet Absorbs 99.96% of Light that Touches it; How Would You Use It?


The possibilities for photography are endless. That’s the thought that crossed our minds earlier today when we stumbled across Vantablack, the new ‘darkest material on the planet.’

Created by UK-based Surrey NanoSystems, this nanotube material is designed to reflect back as little radiation as possible… and it’s darn good at its job. According to Surrey, the material absorbs 99.96% of all the light that touches it. Read more…

Radiant Light: Beautiful Light Paintings Try to Capture that Which Cannot Be Seen

Radiant Light - Exhibition

Inspired by that which we cannot see — such as the shapes of sound, the feelings we experience, the relationships of the various patterns in this world, and the energy constantly emitted by matter — photographer Patrick Rochon has created a beautiful series of light-painting photographs called Radiant Light. Read more…

Striking ISS Photo Shows How Dark North Korea is Compared to Its Neighbors


A new photo released by NASA and taken from the International Space Station shows just how dark North Korea really is, and we don’t mean figuratively. Taken on the night of January 30th as the ISS was passing over the Korean Peninsula, a nearly completely blacked-out North Korea jumps out at you, surrounded by its well-lit neighbors. Read more…

Photographer Brings the Landscapes of the Brothers Grimm to Life in Haunting Photos

Allee Niederbayern

People familiar with the Brother’s Grimm fairy tales know that the Disney versions of many of these tales were rather less dark than the original, broody, oh-my-goodness-did-that-just-happen-in-a-fiary-tale versions.

The photographs in German photographer Kilian Schoenberger‘s series Brothers Grimm’s Homeland represent the latter universe: a foggy, dark, ominous place where the next footfall you hear might send you running. Read more…

Silvia Grav’s Strange and Surreal Black & White Photo Manipulations


Madrid-based photographer Silvia Grav‘s work is best described as “surreal.” Paired with poetic captions that Google Translate simply doesn’t do justice to, each black-and-white photo manipulation holds a deep artistic meaning. Read more…

A Long Exposure Desk Portrait

On the same day I was experimenting with the light painting I described in a post yesterday, I also fiddled around with long exposure portraiture. I had my buddy Aaron pose for me at his desk in near darkness. The only sources of light in the room were his laptop screen, a few LED flashlights that I placed on his desk in various directions, and a lighter that Aaron held in his hand.

Here’s the original, unedited photograph that resulted:


It was taken with a 10 second exposure at ISO 100. It was probably a mistake to use such a low ISO, since I could have gotten the same exposure with less time if I had used a higher number. Every time the ISO number doubles, the shutter speed is cut in half for the same exposure (assuming aperture is kept constant). This is pretty intuitive, since if you double the sensitivity of your film, you’ll only need half as much time to expose it with the same amount of light.

Keeping the aperture at a constant f/8, here’s what the difference would have been.

ISO 100 – 10 second exposure
ISO 200 – 5 second exposure
ISO 400 – 2.5 second exposure
ISO 800 – ~1.25 second exposure
ISO 1600 – ~.75 second exposure

Luckily, Aaron was able to hold still enough to not appear too blurry in the photograph, making it acceptable when viewed at a normal web resolution. If it were to be blown up or printed, the faster shutter speed would have helped a lot.

Here’s a crop showing the different small sources of light that I used to illuminate the scene:


What I found interesting about lighting up the scene this way was that each of the sources of light were a slightly different color temperature, giving the scene an interesting look in terms of colors and lighting.

During post processing, I increased exposure a little, did a little recovery, added a splash of fill light, and pushed contrast up a little. Here’s the final image (hover over it to compare it to the original):


If you’re looking for something new to learn and photograph, try your hand at taking longer exposure portraits with unconventional sources of light. Just find a friend that can hold still!