This episode of the Light Painting Vlog is a little different. Instead of a how to, it is more of a collection of videos from our adventure with Anya. I will explain how we made the final light painting in detail here in writing.

But first, before I explain the way we made the image, I want to talk about another idea I had been toying with. I sat down and wrote out a sort of poem about our experience in Chicago. Imagine those hip hop poet sessions where a person speaks a poem in the form of a rapper without the music. I thought about taking this poem I wrote and using it in the vlog, unfortunately the video footage and the poem do not relate, so I will share it with you here. I am no poet, I don’t know the rules of poetry so therefore, go easy on me. Here is the poem…

In the town we know as Chi

with the wind and towers that soar as high

as the egos written on the buildings

in the glow of the pale moon above all the boats on their moorings

we find ourselves exploring

depths of friendships from Russia through Hong Kong

and yours truly representing old glory

till early morning

like the Puerto Ricans partying on the streets between Kedzie and Homan

and when the city lights are lit bright

we open the shutter and capture the world

and we Stimulight the Night,



So there it is, a poem like idea for a vlog that didn’t come together, but the best part about these vlogs is that there will be another.

Now on to the image below. Anya, Jackie and I walked along the shore of Lake Michigan overlooking the skyline of Chicago, Illinois. When we came upon a great vantage point of the city, we stopped and set up the camera. I jumped down and worked the flashlight while Anya clicked the shutter, and Jackie shot video of the whole experience. I quickly realized the small flashlight I brought didn’t have enough power to overcome the ambient light in the scene. I struggled a bit with it until I remembered that my iPhone has a bright light built into it. I grabbed my phone from my pocket, turned on the light, and began to write out C-h-i-c-a-g-o while covering the phone between each of the letters. In the end, after several attempts, this is the image we came up with.

Chicago Light Painting

Technical Details

Camera: Nikon  D5100

Lens: Tamron 17-50mm

Focal Length: 17 mm

Shutter Speed: 30s

F Number: 29

ISO: 100


By Dan McCreight


If you would like to license this image for commercial use please contact us.

Feel free to download this image and use it for your personal use. I just ask that you attribute with a link to this page and the following caption. (photo by Stimulight the Night)