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Theresa Campbell - Texas School Review

03 Aug 2023 2:38 PM | Duane Blocker, CPP (Administrator)

Texas School 2023: John Hartman Light Painting Class

I was excited to attend John Hartman’s Light Painting class at Texas School this year thanks to a generous scholarship from PPGH! 

John is an extremely good teacher who is super easy to follow. Our class enjoyed three light painting projects that both challenged and intrigued us. 

For Project 1, we watched John work his magic on a bright yellow Porsche Cayman S! The car’s owner, who was a previous race car driver, welcomed us into his garage full of high-end vehicles. It was a sight to behold. John selected this yellow Porsche because it was a difficult color to light paint. He shared with us the nuances involved in lighting the car’s fine details just right to enhance its best features, while preserving its true color. This photo is only one of many exposures captured to showcase this awesome car! You can see John’s final version (done quickly of course) on Facebook here: (1) Facebook

A group of objects on a table Description automatically generated with low confidenceFor Project 2, we all brought in personal items that we set up on tables and learned how to light paint ourselves. Some of us learned (meaning me) how important it is to be sure nothing in your still life set up moves or your light painting project will have to begin all over again! Also, it is best to keep it simple (I added way too many items into my scene!) Here’s the best I could do since I bumped my camera before finishing my project.

It was meant to be a representation of things captured. The top half of the project is unfinished because that is where things moved. But hey, I know what I did wrong! And have such respect for the level of detail that goes into this process. It was super fun coming up with the concept, learning how to light each element to tell the story, and working on it with oversight by John and his awesome wranglers, Dori and Lowell. I can see so many applications for this approach in compositions for print competition as well as client work and just fun personal projects.

For Project 3, John light painted an Indian motorcycle that belongs to Ron Nichols (of ProSelect fame). Ron actually brought the motorcycle to our classroom on the Renaissance Hotel’s second floor! John showed us how to highlight the intricate details like logos, how to extract it and place it in a more appropriate environment, and how to pose a person with their bike. You can see his final version here: (1) Facebook

I thoroughly enjoyed his class and would highly recommend it to anyone who wants to try something new and add a little magic to your toolkit.

Theresa Campbell

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