Karl writes:
>Marcus asked if I thought the photographer experimented with painting with light.  I do not think so.

It depends; you're probably right and it was most likely done with photoshop. But...

>  The lighting is too even and directional.  With the little experimentation I have done with paining with light, the painting creates an eerie and surreal feel.  This photo has strong directional light.

Yes. The parts that make me suspect light painting is the way that the skin textures are smoothed out, and the light is a bit contradictory in a few areas. That could easily be photoshop, though. To have done this in photoshop, the photographer would have taken an image lit with a single soft light or 2 and then applied darkening layers perhaps with a brush or just contrasting layers. To get the skin that soft you can use Deke McLelland's trick of using the healing brush to clone a random grain pattern over the skin areas while preserving luminance and color (it's a neat trick but I don't like the effect) - email if you want to discuss it further. Or should we have a photoshop workshop next? ;)

>  I am attaching an example I found on photosig from canuto/knut.  The photographer lives in from Norway.  I wrote him and he gave me this advice for painting with light.

One thing to be aware of: there are pro tools for light painting and, while they are insanely expensive, they are also freaky cool. The "hosemaster light hose" uses fiberoptic to emit predictable and directional (but soft) light. It's what they use for a lot of car interiors for ads (or did before there was photoshop) - you can very accurately meter the output from the hosemaster and then you know that to get the base exposure you want in one area "all" you do is apply the light to that area for X amount of time.

>  -Hi, first of all it must be total darknes in the room. (My model is laying on a white background-paper. I start with her feets. You may moove yourselves all the time, but NEVER ever go back to a part you have been lightning. (cause the model will always moove a little.) I try to hold the flashligt in the same distance to the model all the time, to get a even exposure. When I am finished with the model, I lighten the background. As a start, try to get your model to find a "relaxed" position. I am lucky to use a digital camera, so I can se the reusult, and can change my f: til I find the right one.

Another way of doing this (that is actually easier!) is to incident meter your flashlight at the point where it hits the subject. Then stop down the aperture and compute the exposure on the order of pieces of seconds. So suppose the flashlight needs 1 second's worth of playing on an area to get the base exposure you want. So you sit there with the light off going "one potato, two potato..." ;)   I have done it myself with distressingly bad results. ;) 

I use a photek "people popper" black velvet background a lot - maybe too much - but it's killer great stuff for lightpainting...
I *tried* (and failed) a very cool concept with lightpainting. I have a highend DSLR and it has the ability to do an "image view" on a TV screen. So my idea was to lock the camera open and then have it outputting the image (in realtime) to a flat panel display. So I could light-paint and actually SEE the image appearing on the flat panel. Turns out it didn't work because my camera only sends the image to the display when the CCD "closes" and the image is "done" - but that would have been very fun...

> Hope this can help you a little-
>I think it might be fun for us to try and use the mini mag light to experiment with painting with light.

Perhaps we should! <g>  When we get to actually DOING stuff instead of talking about it, you'll have a lot of leeway in your assignment, so please consider doing lightpainting, Karl! :)

mjr.