Ideally, an SLR camera is best suited to the practice of light painting because it provides great control flexibility. Depending on the model, bridges or compact devices can also be used.
At a minimum, your device needs to offer the following parameters:
- Exposure time
The exposure time is the time during which the shutter of your camera will remain open, so the time on whom the photo will be taken. Many cameras offer to adjust the exposure time, often up to 30 or 60 seconds, which is perfect to take pictures. For added flexibility, a device with a mode "Bulb" will be a plus because it will allow you to trigger the opening and closing of the shutter.
- ISO / Sensibility
Lower the sensitivity is, the lower the sensor is sensitive to light. Thus, the amount of light needed for correct image is large. By lowering the sensitivity of the sensor, we take the opportunity to bring out a scene on a long exposure period. To work in good conditions, an ISO of 100 to 400 is recommended.
The aperture is an important parameter that complements the ISO sensitivity. As your eyes are, the more you close the aperture, the less the light enters in your lens.
Other options will be loved:
The presence of a fastening system of the camera on the tripod. Although it is possible to do without, it is still more convenient and reliable to put camera on a tripod! The vast majority of digital cameras are now equipped with tripod attachment system, but it's worth checking.
- Remote Control
The remote trigger control is really one of the functions that will help you the most when you make Light Painting. Remote triggering is usually done via an infrared remote control, but for this it is necessary that your device has a sensor! Inquire before buying your device, even if it's a reflex , not all are equipped.
- External Flash
Depending on the type of photos you want to take, the option to use one or more external flashes shortly also be a selection criterion. Have a "hot shoe" support is then an advantage because it will easily allow you to control external flashes, installed on the housing or remotely.
The image processing time at the end of the picture can sometimes be quite long when making Light Painting. On some devices, it may take several seconds before the precious photo appears on the screen, resulting in slight frustration !! Conversely, on some devices, most recent, there is no waiting time. So do not hesitate to test the store before buying your next case ... How? It's very simple, make a 30 second exposure, whatever the outcome, you will see the time it takes for the camera to process it.