Light Painting Evolved

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Gif animations included in this post. Add photoreal images, abstract designs, and animation to your long exposure photos and timelapse. Light painting is a fairly simple to do. The first step is to make sure you have the right equipment. Almost every DSLR, and most point-and-shoots, have a long exposure mode.

Pixelstick began as a proof of concept using an arduino and some off the shelf LED strips. We got results, but weren’t happy with the resolution of nor with the durability and usability of the actual device.

It’s as simple as choosing the length of the exposure (from a few seconds to a few hours) and moving a light source within the frame. The process itself is fun and the excitement of seeing what you captured immediately can be extremely rewarding.

The fine detail

Pixelstick reads images created in Photoshop (or the image editor of your choice) and displays them one line at a time, creating endless possibilities for abstract and/or photorealistic art. Taking this one step further, Pixelstick can increment through a series of images over multiple exposures, opening up light painting to the world of timelapse, and allowing for animations the likes of which have never before seen.

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Rainbows are no longer beholden to the laws of physics

The Tale of pixelstick

Pixelstick began as a proof of concept using an arduino and some off the shelf LED strips. We got results, but weren’t happy with the resolution of nor with the durability and usability of the actual device. We moved quickly into custom LED circuit boards, a more powerful ARM microcontroller and a sturdier design made of lightweight aluminum rather than plastic tubing. With the ability to control the density of the LED count while at the same time refining the custom aluminum extrusion, the current version of pixelstick began to take shape.

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Animation to your long exposure photos and timelapse.

Each iteration performed better and was tweaked as we logged more hours with the pixelstick.

The full package contains:

  • LED PCBs (198 LEDs total)
  • Two 3’ aluminum extrusion with connecting bracket & diffusion lens
  • Handle with foam grip and rotating sleeve
  • Controller box with connecting cables and clips
  • Battery holder (AA Batteries not included)
  • Carry bag

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