Yes, that’s right… I LOVE old oil cans!

•January 5, 2017 • 4 Comments

Hello everyone and Happy 2017! It’s a brand new year and we hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season!

As always, if you’re viewing this in an email, please click the title of this post to see the blog, which offers a better viewing experience.

It’s no secret; I have a thing for old oil cans. There is something appealing about their simplicity of purpose, and yet, how vital they were for the maintenance of complex machinery.

My friend, co-instructor and photographer John Corcoran owns this example from the 1920’s, an Eagle #66.

The many years of use is evidenced by the gorgeous patina.

To see a few more examples of this series, click HERE.


Photographer Harold Ross' Light Painted Image "Still Life With Oil Can and Brass Ring"

Photograph by Harold Ross

Still Life with Eggs… and Solvent?

•December 14, 2016 • 10 Comments

When photographing something that inspires me (in this case, some eggs from a local farmer), I sometimes find that the composition demands another element for balance, and more often than not, the size, shape and color of an object becomes more important than the object itself.

While working on this composition, I remembered my “Squirt” solvent dispenser, which I’ve had for 20 years and still use routinely. Its conical shape and the height of its spout were just the right thing to balance this image. The color was a bonus!

Does one normally think of a solvent dispenser as “going with” organic eggs, or food of any kind? To the contrary!

In fact, I often purposely use elements in a composition that don’t relate at all. These unexpected relationships can be delightful and fun!

Light Painted Photograph "Still Life With Eggs" by Photographer Harold RossPhotograph by Harold Ross

Student Images from our recent group workshops.

•December 5, 2016 • 7 Comments

Hello all,

Although I don’t get to it often enough, I always enjoy posting results from our group workshops. Although there is sometimes a repetition of subject matter (my collection of props is large, but not that large!), my workshop attendees always managed to surprise and delight with their interpretations and compositions. I like to say that the goal of the workshop is not to make a masterpiece, but to learn how to make a masterpiece. That said, I’m constantly amazed at the level of quality of the images that my students have created.

The images load onto this page in random order… each time you refresh the page, the order and sizing will be different. I think it’s kind of fun to see the random juxtapositions; also there is no possible way for me to have favorites; they are all terrific.

All images from students over the years are HERE.

As always, make sure to click on the title to go to the blog, then click on an image to get a carousel view!

A Still Life Lighting Animation

•November 26, 2016 • 7 Comments

Now and then, I make a lighting animation to see how the light plays through a still life photograph. It’s fun, and it’s easy to make these animations, and it gives me an idea of how the light is working. These animations almost feel like videos shot from the camera’s point of view!

There are two pencil sharpeners in this image; the small green one on the left has such an unusual shape, and I love the color. The larger sharpener was given to me many years ago by my father, and although it’s just an object, it’s a sentimental one which I’ve photographed before. It really is a small machine (and it has gears!), and I admire the thought that went into its design.

Photographer Harold Ross' Light Painted Image Still Life with Pencil Sharpener and Bottle

Photograph by Harold Ross

Here’s the video animation, which gives an idea of how the lighting looked as I applied it:

The (almost) forgotten teapot collection…

•November 20, 2016 • 8 Comments

Vera and I have been collecting teapots for some time, but in the four years since moving to our current home, we’d forgotten to unpack them! Finally, a few weeks ago, we found the cardboard box which held the carefully packaged collection.

I decided to photograph them, and here is one of the images from the series.

We love Japanese Tetsubin pots, which are cast iron. Traditionally, when making tea, they are heated over a charcoal fire. Their textures are gorgeous, and with my interest in metal work (started by my blacksmith grandfather, Albert Iten) they really speak to me.

My hope was to capture the sublime combination of craft and design.

As always, if you’re viewing this in an email, please click to see the blog, which offers a better viewing experience.

Light Painted photograph Still Life with Teapot and Red Cloth by Harold RossPhotography by Harold Ross

Email woes :-( …are now fixed!

•November 8, 2016 • 2 Comments

*** Thanks everyone for your cooperation while our email was down. We appreciate it! Our preferred email is now up and running again, and you can send emails to our email. However, the gmail email account will also reach us if you forget.***

Due to our email migration from LiveBooks, we are having an email outage which began last night, and hopefully will be resolved by Wednesday.

If you need to contact us to discuss a workshop, please send an email to

Or call us at 717-923-0269 and leave a message.

Sometimes I long for the old days:


Still Life with Postage Scale and Scissors by Photographer Harold RossPhotograph by Harold Ross

ANNOUNCEMENT: Spring 2017 Light Painting Workshops Dates!

•October 25, 2016 • 1 Comment


Photographer Harold Ross' Still Life With Teapot And TablePhotograph by Harold Ross

We have just decided on weekend workshop dates for 2017!

Our next Light Painting the Still Life Workshops, which will be held here at my home studio (in beautiful Lancaster County, PA) are scheduled for:

~ March 3rd, 4th, and 5th, 2017

~ March 31st, April 1st, and April 2nd, 2017

~ April 28th, 29th, and 30th, 2017

~ May 19th, 20th, and 21st, 2017

Registration is now open, and each workshop is limited to 4 students.

To sign up please contact us at 717-923-0269 or via email at

Click HERE for the schedule and details of the workshop.

My workshops involve real teaching of the methods I employ, and this is a technical and intensive workshop… you will be given the training needed to produce work at a very high level. You will be receiving personal, detailed hands-on (literally!) instruction on proper light painting (not light pointing), and my post production process. You will actually learn the subtleties of lighting, using simple and inexpensive lighting tools, and the nuances of using layers and masking in Photoshop to create powerful images!

I’ve been using light painting as my main method of lighting for 27 years.

I can only begin to list the other things we cover in the workshop; Visual accommodation (very important!), proper sharpening, lens choice for studio work, diffraction and why it happens, preparing an image for print, and lots more.

My co-instructor, John Corcoran, will be bringing a lot of experience to the workshop. He has worked as a professional photographer for over 35 years, and has been light painting for over 25 of those years. John will be present when the workshop is filled.

He shoots wonderful floral images and portraits, all using light painting. You can see some of John’s images HERE.

You can see my students’ images in my Student Workshop Images page.

“I have been a professional photographer for the last 38 years, working in Los Angeles, and for the last 15 years in Santa Barbara, California.  I have always wanted to learn light sculpting but never seemed to have the time.  Well, I’m glad I waited to find Harold Ross!  His expertise and quality instruction has opened my eyes to a new and wonderful way to express my creativity in photography.  My expertise is lighting, and I have met very few photographers I admire more than Harold for lighting, amazing.  His quality and attention to every detail is second to none.  The personal attention I got from such a small class gave me a deep understanding of the ideas behind the procedures.  It enabled me to have a fuller experience and benefit from Harold’s personal touch and guidance.  I highly recommend this workshop to anyone who wants to take their photography in a very different direction than the rest of the photographic crowd.  Harold Ross is a craftsman, which there are very few left in our profession.”
– Richard Salas, California, Group Workshop

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