light painting sublument

Light-painting in Apulia: Sublument

Light is the element of any photographic technique as it defines the mood of the shot.

There would be no photographic image without it. On the other hand, the very meaning of the word photography is "writing with light".

In each shot, the visual artist must know how to use it wisely, observe it, reproduce it and modify it in order to give the right value to what he wants to photograph. Light is just a tool.

In light-painting, light is not the means, but the purpose. It's what you want to capture, it's the trail that every light source can leave when moving.

The light-painter is a kind of painter who with a light source creates drawings, shapes, moments of light captured by the camera lens.

light-painting sublument

Light-painting: drawings of light

Light-painting literally means to paint with light and is a photographic technique used to create photographs using a simple light source.

Movements are made in front of the open shutter in a fairly long time interval. These leave trails that will be captured by the lens and will give life to bright compositions.


Sublument is a photographic project by Andrea Riezzo, a visual artist who embraced the technique of light-painting.

The light-painting sessions started in 2017 and are mainly based on the use of a light tube that Andrea expertly uses as a painter's brush, creating drawings that shape the subject of his night photos. A technique seen for the first time from Eric Parè and made perfect by the Canadian artist along with Kim Henry.

Light-painting is just that, painting with light.


Drawings that the light-painter creates by moving the light tube and taking advantage of the long exposure photographic shot. The movements leave light trails that are captured in the photo.

It is the result of techniques, of experimented tricks but above all of creativity and inspiration by the light-painter. But passion isn't everything. The choice of the right location, the nocturnal settings where the light was able to express at its best was fundamental for the photographic project Sublument.

Each journey is an experience of our soul. And to make it even more indelible, we can capture it in an image created with the light-painting technique.

In Sublument there is a strong link with the territory. The locations chosen by Andrea are the most evocative beaches of Salento and the most enchanting coasts of Puglia.

An environment that turned out to be ideal for finding the right inspiration and producing photos with spectacular effects, the result of experiments and tests that since 2017 have enriched the project with different techniques and the personal style of the visual artist.

The instruments

Camera capable of adjusting the shutter speed in manual mode, i.e. the shutter speed. Essential because the shot is taken in a long exposure during which it must capture the light present on the scene.

A tripod.

A light source, a LED flashlight or any other device. In Sublument the choice fell on self-made light tubes. A transparent acrylic tube, 1 meter long with a diameter between 2.8 cm and 3.2 cm, the diameter dimensions are essential because the torch must be put inside. Later in 2021 were added the light tubes from LightPaintingTubes' Travel Kit+.

Steel wool is also a valid tool to create an effect of light and fire.

The right location that can enhance the result. Open spaces illuminated by the moon, the seashore to take advantage of the reflections of light on the water.


The technique

In Sublument, the recurring instrument is a acrylic tube illuminated from the inside by a flashlight. The light must be evenly diffused, the torch is inserted in one end, while the other is capped with aluminum foil. The tube can have baking paper on the inside or can be finely sanded to spread the light more uniformly.

The shutter speed is set to 2-3 sec. so it can capture the moving tube. The simpler the figures drawn with the tube movements, the better the composition.

The project is a continuous game between light and the surrounding space in a long exposure. The photographic lens captures the trails that the light leaves and the "real shapes" it composes real. The result is a unique photographic image.

Another technique proposed by Riezzo is steel wool light-painting: the steel wool ball is put inside a kitchen whisk and, when rendered incandescent, offers surprising luminous compositions.


 Light-painting experience

Each journey is an experience of our soul. And to make it even more indelible, we can capture it in an image created with the light-painting technique.

Andrea Riezzo's idea was to take people to the most evocative beaches and coasts of Salento and Puglia where they can create light-painting photos.

Exploring the territory is part of the light-painter's job, you have to find the right place that can lead to the best possible result. Do some inspections at night to make the most of the light, find a space that can be the ideal background for what you want to paint. And why not, transform this research into a tool to make the territory known to people as well.

In this sense, Sublument combined the beauty of the Apulian coasts with those moments of light that the lens can capture, giving life to unique and suggestive images in which the balance of the human figure is immersed in the sinuous movement created by the trails of light.

A project that is the result of inspiration, technique, creativity and passion.