TImothy Tichy's picture

Burn Brighter

October 26, 2015

We recently replaced all the bulbs in our new home with LEDs. I had a few perfectly good old fashioned halogens so I figured I'd have some fun with them.

Log in or register to post comments

9 Comments

Carlos Teixeira's picture

That is a great smoke. Can you explain your setup and post a little bit more?

TImothy Tichy's picture

Thanks Carlos! The smoke in the scene is from the filament burning up. It takes a lot of heat to make light, so the bulbs are filled with an inert gas to keep the tungsten from igniting due to the temperature. Remove the top of the bulb and "POOF".

On this shot I used a Dremel to remove the top of the bulb (the glass on these is amazingly strong). I removed the female plug of a cheap extension cord and then soldered the wires to the backside of the lamp base. I glued a bit of armature wire back there as well to hold the light in place, then I hid the wires under the rocks. A pair of white bounce cards on the sides to give shape to the bulb, and a gridded strobe overhead to simulate the light thrown off by the bulb. I had an extension cord reel next to the camera so I could work both at the same time. Put the camera in high speed burst, press the shutter button, and the plug in the bulb. The whole burn is over in a second or two.

Carlos Teixeira's picture

Was this one try, or did you used all of the house's old lights? Because the smoke has a really cool mushroom shape, and in my experience that is hard to get. Thanks for your explanation.

TImothy Tichy's picture

This was on the third bulb. The smoke rise quite fast, so it's more that the shape is hard to catch than that it's hard to generate. I had to start the shutter in continuous mode before I plugged in the light, otherwise I just wasn't fast enough.

Tyler Newcomb's picture

Congrats on photo of the day! You definitely deserve it!

Brian Rodgers Jr.'s picture

Very cool Timothy, I dig this image

10 of 10 just for telling us how you did it. amazing image

Brian Corliss's picture

Very creative! Great job.