Darren Pearson, also known as Darius Twin, is an LA-based artist known for adventurous animation, quirky graphic design, and his specialty—slow-shutter night photography. Produced on location and accented by trippy light paintings, his long exposure method is the same technique used to capture star trails. He takes that relatively simple concept and goes absolutely insane, creating some of the most captivating images you’ll ever see.
Pearson is constantly on the road, venturing across the Southwest in search of the ideal landscape for his life-sized light sculptures. From Death Valley to Big Sur, the backdrops are stunning on their own. Coupled with his ingenuity and steady hand, Pearson’s intricate illustrations are straight up surreal.
Everything from dinosaurs to dragons come to life with his signature Night-Writer, an LED color-tipped light pen, which is available on his website for $59.99. The custom tool allows him to draw portraits in mid-air to compliment the ethereal scenery.
Pearson’s latest innovation is a 3D printed tool with a computer chip that allows the user to quickly switch through numerous programmed colors. It also has a dimmer, which makes it easy to adjust the brightness of the LED. This unreleased version of the Night-Writer will be available sometime in mid-2016.
This technique is catching on, but few can do it like Darius Twin. An accomplished artist with a background in film and digital media, he’s been going strong since 2008, placing him among the pioneers of American light painting.
Whereas many artists are overprotective about their craft and very secretive regarding their methods, Pearson is quite the opposite. He breaks down all the technical specifications of each image, and also provides a list of suggested gear when attempting this style of photography.
His goal is not only to push the boundaries of modern art, but also to promote a greater understanding and appreciation of light-painting while providing readers with the tools they need to try it out for themselves.
If you’re wondering how Pearson manages to paint these light sculptures without appearing in the frame of the photo, here’s the trick…
First, you need to wear dark clothing, preferably with a hoodie. The other tip is to constantly move throughout the long exposure. Of course, that’s easier said than done when drawing an invisible figure.
Let there be light!