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Light Painting with Athletic Flare: Zach Ancell’s New Series Trajectory

By Jules Ebe on June 7th 2013

We can never stress enough how important it is to work on your own personal projects alongside your primary client work. It gives your creative muscles time to stretch and grow. It also gives you the chance to have fun doing something that is completely your own.


That is part of the reason we love Ancell’s series Trajectory. After wrapping up months of commercial work for the University of Oregon, Ancell was feeling antsy and decided to play around with light in the studio with a model friend. What resulted was a concept that played off the concept of light painting and the athleticism of his subjects.

As a former college athlete, Ancell was able to seamlessly blend his passion for sports and photography in a series he plans to continue throughout the year.

Shot against a black background in his studio, each photo show models and athletes going through the motions they make on the field, court or stage. As he slows the shutter, the light paints the picture frame with their physical grace. A flash or strobe freezes the last movement, avoiding their last posture from being blurred.

When I had the chance to speak with Ancell, he stated that the most difficult shot to capture was the backflip. He needed to work within the strength limits of the model and would only have a few takes to get it right.

“In the end I realized that I wanted it to be more about the movement . . . Trajectory just seemed to make the most sense to incorporate those ideas. It’s about the movement of the person and showing that path.” ~ Zach Ancell

One of the qualities that I enjoy most about this work is that the subjects appear to trail fire. What a wonderful celebration of the passion and dedication of athletes of all kinds.









We cannot wait to see more from this ongoing project!

Until Next Time . . .

Stay Inspired ~ Jules

CREDITS: Photographs by Zach Ancell have been used with permission for SLR Lounge. Do not copy, modify or re-post this article or images without express permission from SLR Lounge and the artist.


is a Southern California based Conceptual Artist and Photographer. Her work has been featured in several print publications and selections can be seen in local gallery exhibitions. Connect with her on Facebook and Google+.

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  1. Robert Sheppard

    really nice images

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