Photography is often referred to as the art of “painting with light”. In most instances that 'painting' happens in a fraction of a second. The Live Composite feature on Olympus cameras allows that light to be painted on the sensor for much longer periods of time without overexposing the whole image.
When I first started using Live Composite I had one purpose in mind - to capture star trails. It is certainly ideal for accomplishing that task since the feature is designed to work in low light conditions, but now it's time to go beyond the stars. If you are new to Live Composite or want information specific to creating star trails check out my article, Olympus, Live Composite and Star Trails.
The purpose of this post is to illustrate more earthly pursuits that involve live composite including capturing fireworks, lightning, traffic trails, moving clouds and light painting. Rather than go through a step-by-step process (if you need that check out that link above) I thought I would show some specific examples of photos that use live composite and how that image was achieved. Some of the photos below are my own, but I have also engaged the help of three fellow Olympus Trailblazers; Mike Boening, Frank Smith and Jamie MacDonald.
When Olympus released their flagship E-M1 model back in 2013 it made quite a splash. Reviewers and photographers of all stripes were thoroughly impressed with its feature-packed design. Three years later it is still a highly-regarded camera, but alas, it's time for an upgrade. After spending some time working with the new OM-D E-M1 Mark II, I have no doubt that Olympus has another success on their hands.
Before I get into any details, I must provide two important qualifiers. First, this is not a technical review. It is a 'first impressions' write-up with a few supporting details and a lot of comparison to its predecessor, the E-M1. Secondly, all of the information in this post is based on a pre-production model of the camera.
If you would rather watch a quick summary of the E-M1 Mark II, check out my video description below.
Peter Baumgarten is a professional photographer and educator. He is also an Olympus Visionary and NiSi Official Photographer.