JanLeonardo rarely leaves the house before sunset. His neighbors often joke that he’s a vampire. The real reason however is his addiction: to darkness – and the images it enables him to create. We discover the mysterious world of light painting from the man who is pioneering the art form.
Our interview starts at 3 pm. JanLeonardo continually excuses himself for yawning as he sips his coffee. He has just woken up after getting home from work at the crack of dawn. This is not unusual. He has worked as a light painter for over 10 years. Every night he heads out with his camera, a varying selection of light sources and most importantly, an image in his mind: an image that he can picture perfectly when he closes his eyes; an image that he needs darkness to create.
Jan Leonardo Wöllert was born in Cuxhaven, Germany, in 1970. Today he is one of the most well-known light painters in the world. With clients ranging from the fashion label Diesel to the band Coldplay, it is clear that people like what he sees. We ask him about his work and discover what it is that inspires him to switch his lights on as most people switch theirs off for the night.