Light Painting of a Jellyfish

a light painted image of a red and white squid
(Smithsonian Institution )

What does a bioluminescent creature that lives more than 2 miles below the surface of the ocean and a glow stick have in common? More than you think. Bioluminescence is the process by which living organisms produce their own light. Using a photographic technique called light painting, you can do a fun activity to engage students to learn about bioluminescence with art.  

Here, a visitor to the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History "draws" a bioluminescent jellyfish. Watch a Light Painting Tutorial to learn how you can create a light painting of your own, and read an Ocean Portal blog about how to use this technique for a fun lesson on bioluminescence. To see more light painting images from Smithsonian visitors, and to upload your own, visit the Ocean Portal's Flickr group.