We got a Pixelstick about three weeks ago, thought it would be a fun thing to add to the gear collection and possibly use at anime conventions. The pixelstick is a narrow 6-foot strip of colored LEDs that will go off in a pattern, and as you walk with the stick, it will form a light trail or picture based on the loaded program. Most people use it to create abstract light art or do light painting; however, it can also be used to create a background for a photo or add effects like fireballs and ghosts.
Last night I did a few test shots with the stick. I did some light painting first. Which is interesting, but I think I need to have a specific pattern in my head or be working around interesting objects and/or people. I also determined we might need to get the attachment for the stick, which bends and smooths the light to form better curves. Overall, the light painting turned out okay. However, I need to work on my timing for the moon. But the lantern background turned out well.
The next test was to have my husband stand in the picture and shoot fireballs. When I informed him of this role, he told me he couldn’t shoot fireballs because he only knew the somatic component for magic missile. To do the fireball test (since there were only two of us) I put the camera on a 10-second timer and the flash on back-curtain sync. After I hit the shutter button on the camera, I would run over to where my husband was standing, hit the fire button on the stick, and then walked away from him perpendicular to the camera. This worked fairly well; I just needed to start closer to his hands. The one thing that did significantly help was my camera fires a pre-flash right when the timer ends but before the shutter opens, which was my cue to hit the fire button on the stick. This will take practice but I am fairly happy with the results.