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Steel Wool Photography is a super fun and super easy type of photography. Once you have your camera this project can be FREE.
To start I want to say that this is not an original idea by any means. This type of picture has been around for many years. There is currently only one other instructable on this topic that I have found, and I want to make a much more in-depth tutorial on the subject.
Next: SAFTEY. As you may be able to see from the cover photo creating this photo involves fire. As you may know fire can be dangerous. Picking a good location is critical and I will go very in depth on this subject later. While I was taking the pictures I am using in this instructable I actually started a small grass fire and had to call the fire department. *Makes very sheepish face* I was able to put out the fire before the department even got there but it was looking pretty hairy for a minute. I WILL NOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY FIRES THAT YOU START.
Any somewhat experienced photographer will know that creating these photos uses "Long Exposure Photography" but I am not making this for experienced photographers because they probably all ready know how to do this.
The way a camera works is when you press the shutter button a small window is opened up which exposes light to a cameras sensor. This light is the images that we see. The longer the shutter is open, the more light is recorded. We will be holding our shutters open for around 8-10 seconds. When our eyes see light we only see it when it is in the same place. If you move a flashlight we do not see where the light has been, only where it is currently. Cameras can see where the light has been. This is how we see trails of sparks from the steel wool.
If you still don't understand how this works there is tons of information on long exposure photography elsewhere on the internet.
This is probably the most important step so I am going to break it into 2 steps.
The first step is going to be a list of materials. I will start with a list of materials then I will explain each one.
• Steel Wool (grade 0 or finer. The more zeros the finer it is.)
• A metal cooking whisk
• Some type of string. Flexible metal cable works best since it doesn't catch on fire.
• A lighter, matches, or a 9 volt battery.