Dancing with lights in Venice

Pretty isn’t it? But can’t figure out what it is? Let me explain. This is a long exposure shot taken at the dead of the night (1:40 am) of one of the numerous bridges in Venice whilst my new found friend Bert, runs over it with a custom built LED "light stick" to create the multi coloured light waves. For those of you who don’t know, Bert is not visible in the picture as he is moving too fast for the sensor to capture him whilst the light stick is emitting enough light to be recorded at every point.

Bert has perfected the art of light painting and you should check out his account on Instagram (@graffitilights) of the many beautiful images he has created. My first meeting with Bert was an interesting one – I had broken my 12-24mm lens the previous night and after a day of shooting with an 85mm, I was pretty disappointed that I could not get any of my usual wide angle shots. But I was still trying to do some long exposures when this tall guy comes over and very awkwardly asks me if I can do a favour. At this point, I hold on to my camera a bit tighter and am ready to tell him that I have no money to spare but something about his earnest manner makes me pause and all he asks is to press the shutter button on his camera while he does his light painting stuff. He then proceeds to take out a 1m long light stick out of a ski bag and I am immediately interested. For the next couple of hours, we walked around Venice doing long exposure light painting images whilst Bert danced around with his light stick and attracted a lot of attention!!! I was so disappointed that I did not have my wide angle as I could have got some pretty sweet shots but with the 85mm, it was just too tight to get anything nice. This was the only one that came out with the light painting in the picture! Bert, thanks for the experience and can’t wait to do it again!

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