ADVANCED TECHNIQUES and PROCESSES 2A Set fire to a model – Night Photography Test 4


Set fire to a model – Night Photography Test 4

Relates to: Research Outcome: 1, 2, 3


According to Lewis in NPhoto (September 2013) an interesting night photography exercise can involve taking fiery pictures using an EL wire for coloured flame effects so that the image shows up as if it belongs in a horror movie.

As it is approaching Halloween, I thought it appropriate to create a look that is both chilling and exciting. So, following on from our no daylight brief, I have created a series of images demonstrating that I have the skills to produce this kind of photography which will overall inform my proposal.

The criteria for the shoot stipulates that the location needs to be as dark as possible to get a silhouette to stand as still while an assistant moves a wire around in order to ‘’paint an electric fog’’ around a subject. The EL wires are coated in phosphor, giving them and the subject, surrounding composition a neon like glow.


Working with an ISO of 100 and in RAW I began to photograph with an aperture of f/5.6 and f/8 (to combat any blown out highlights). I operated in Bulb mode with a tripod allowing me to keep the shutter open for as long as I needed, which I experimented with. I also used a remote shutter release to avoid camera shake. By having my model stand completely still, a wire was whipped around and behind the subject, painting constantly so the assistant wouldn’t show up in the shot. The model and assistant additionally wore dark clothing to allow for a silhouette for the subject and a near as possible invisible mode for the assistant. I then experimented once shooting a few test shots with a single wire to multiple wires in the hope of recording a variety of coloured light trails.


Allow this work was not completed, I practised with EL wires – see night photography/no daylight brief exercises for more information where I achieved the same results but without a model being present. see best practice in my photography folder.

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