Fire and Light Part 2

While I eventually stopped burning rubber cement to illuminate my photos, my interest in light, movement, and extended exposure didn’t wane.  For some shots, it was a matter of holding the camera steady by hand, without the use of a tripod, just long enough for a slight sense of motion.  For other shots, a tripod was still necessary.


This photo is actually upside down.  It is the reflection in the mirrored ceiling of the pedestrian tunnel that connects the two concourses of Terminal 1 at Chicago O’Hare International Airport.  The focus is on the reflection rather than the neon tubes of the light sculpture.


Christmas lights in suburban Kansas City.  I printed this up and used it for handmade holiday cards one year.  Same effect as the Golden Gate Bridge photo in the previous entry, except I was rotating the tripod almost the entire time.


This photo was shot at a county fair in Oregon the summer of 1988.  I was there as part of a family reunion on my mother’s side and there was a fair near the town we stayed in.


A Flying Tigers B-747 takes off on runway 1R at San Francisco International Airport.  Instead of moving the camera, as I did in the Golden Gate Bridge and Christmas photos, the camera remained fixed on the tripod while the plane moved.  The Flying Tigers logo is visible because the plane pulled into position at the threshold of the runway and stopped for about fifteen seconds before releasing the brakes and taking off.  The red dots above the line of the fence are from the strobe light on top of the plane, which blinked as the plane taxied.


In March 2001, I shot this photo of Tawn on top of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris.  This was a handheld shot with an exposure of about 1/15th of a second.  I used a flash so that the image of Tawn would be fixed and sharp but the background and the railings would have a sense of movement.


That same evening I took this picture at the base of the Eiffel Tower.  Thousands of strobe lights were flashing at 8:00 pm and I shot the exposure at about a half-second handheld while the strobes fired.  This picture captures exactly how this first trip to Paris felt for me.   


I even experimented a bit with extended exposures in Bangkok before I moved here.  This photo was taken in the same alley I visited for last month’s entry about the Old Market in Yaoworat.  This picture from that entry must have been taken within a dozen meters of the above picture.  Funny that some seven or more years later – probably closer to nine! – I went back to the same alley and took more pictures.  I particularly liked how the sky was still purple in the background.


This shot was taken the same evening in the same area, along the main road that cuts through Yaoworat (Chinatown).  I found it fascinating because the neon signs look like something out of the sixties or seventies, so I added a slight sepia tint to the photo.  I also liked that I captured someone else photographing the same view.

As I responded to one comment in the previous post, my current point-and-shoot camera, a Panasonic Lumix LX3, has a lot of manual controls.  I should experiment with it a bit and see what sort of extended exposures I can take.  Maybe moving to digital hasn’t cost me the opportunity to explore my artistic side.


0 thoughts on “Fire and Light Part 2

  1. Oh Chris. I just love these. LOVE THEM!!! I have been getting interested in light photography too, although I have very little time to play. I love the motion, and the mood you can really capture doing this. So fun!

  2. i LOVE LOVE LOVE your pictures. reading your blog all this time i thought you were just really into food and current events, and you capture those things really nicely on camera cause you have a really good eye for styling.. but i didn’t know you were actually into experimenting with light photography as well!

  3. another amazing set of photos! i was amused at the chicago airport picture… i thought that lighting fixture looked familiar! i really like the ferris wheel and eiffel tower pictures; the b747 shot is interesting because you can’t really see the plane at all.

  4. What a delight for the eyes this early in the morning!!! I love the Ferris Wheel shot…and the plane taking off…oh shoot Chris…..I loved ALL of them!!! Ruth Ann

  5. Love these, Chris! You really are a very accomplished artist! The second shot of the Christmas lights made me smile…..It reminded me of a jacket I recently acquired which has similar horizontal streaks of color in the weave….and I even decided it would be a good one to wear at Christmas! I should post a photo of it! Perhaps art like that inspired a textile designer. All your photos are excellent and should win some photography awards!

  6. @kunhuo42 – Thanks Aaron.  As people have seen that Chicago airport shot over the years, several have recognized it.  Untold millions have passed through that tunnel.@yang1815 – I would think so, Andy.  I need to spend some time with it and see what features I’m not taking advantage of.@iskrak – And you thought it was just about the food porn.  Ha ha!@Gma_Joyce – Thank you for the kind words.  Let’s see a picture of that jacket.@Daniele Valois – Thanks Daniele – coming from a photographer as talented as you, that means a lot.@Dezinerdreams – @fortheloveofblogging – @Redlegsix – @Roadlesstaken – It is interesting to me that the ferris wheel shot caught your eyes.  It is my least favorite of the shots and I almost didn’t include it.  Glad you appreciated it, though.@NightlyDreams – The background sky in the market shot was actually that shade of purple.  It was about twenty minutes after sunset and there was an even, very high layer of clouds that was reflecting the colors from the western horizon.@Passionflwr86 – @murisopsis – Thanks for your kind words.  That picture makes me want to grab my passport and get on an Air France flight, destination Paris.@grannykaren – @Babyboomerjill – @CurryPuffy – @Fatcat723 – Glad you all enjoyed the photos and thank you for the kind words.

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