Interview with Rosetta Whitehead about her Award winning light painting March 11 2014, 0 Comments

Interview for where Rosetta recently won first prize in the February 2014 light painting competition. Candida Stevens, Owner of TINT-ART Gallery interviews Rosetta Whitehead about her Light Painting. Rosetta is one of two TINT-ARTists showing at The Other Art Fair in April.   27.02.2014

CS:  What got you into light painting?

RW:  I was studying photography at University when I stumbled across the technique by mistake. I was doing a shoot at night and needed some extra light so I used a torch, the model ran across the image painting herself into it by mistake. In that moment of understanding the endless possibilities of light painting opened up before me.

CS:  When you are setting up for a shoot what practical and creative considerations do you have to make?

RW:  I have to make sure it’s pretty dark so I work by night. All my torches use batteries so I can work anywhere but have to ensure they are charged. For my art work I tend to use my friends or sisters so there a mood of familiarity and intimacy.

CS: When you set to work in the pitch dark do you have an idea of what you will achieve or is it an unknown?

RW: I’m very experimental and quite often go into a shoot without an idea and see what emerges. Chance is an integral element of light painting, at least at the early stages of exploration. Every time I find a new technique, like fiber optic torches, it goes through a new spurt of chance again.

CS: The word photograph means painting with light so you could say light painting defines photography. Where do you feel light painting fits within photography?

RW: It’s the most surreal facet, it leaves so much room for creativity. It’s considered by the Light Painting World Alliance to be a new genre that needs to be recognized as such. I’m not sure if I feel the same way because people have been working with a form of light painting for years right back to Picasso and Dali, it’s all amalgamated now and without the digital age it was difficult to take it as far as it has gone. Working in dark rooms with negatives doing what Jerry Uelsmann did in the 50s and 60s was another form of light painting, dark room tricks, manipulating light. Manray manipulated light in the darkroom. I’m manipulating it in a dark room in the camera all in one exposure. a certain extend I am making a photo montage but it real life. I’m not shown in the frame because I’m not lit, I’m walking around in shot all of the time.

CS: Does it sometimes feel like videography frozen in a single frame?

RW: Absolutely. There is something almost holographic about it. There’s something more honest about it than a single photograph that freezes something because it’s time playing out.

CS: Who inspired you and which of your peers do you most respect?

RW: The Pre Raphaelites were my first inspiration. There are 2 light painters, Patrick Rochon and Aurora Crowley who work with portraiture and nudes. One of Patrick’s nudes spurred on my whole inspiration of fiber optic torches.


We look forward to showing Rosetta's work in April so you can see it first hand.

The Other Art Fair.