Light painter

Sami Voutilainen

I am a painter of souls. I seek the synthesis between photography and painting. My works are imprints of a moment  the random meeting of time and light. My tools are time, light, and a camera.

The Artist

Artist Statement

”I am a painter of souls. I seek the synthesis between photography and painting. My works are imprints of a moment – the random meeting of time and light. My tools are time, light, and a camera.”

I am a photo artist from the city of Jyväskylä, interested in abstract expression. I aim to express the unique soul of humankind with my works. To reflect the immaterial into plain sight with light.

”The soul of a human being is not perfect. How could its image not have cracks and distortions?

My works are light brought to life with fiber optics and captured into visual form with long exposure time. They can present an alternate reality, where the movements of light sources are encapsulated into unpredictable pictures. My goal is to bring uncontrollability and randomness back into photography.

”One can never fully control hand-painted light. Every photographic occasion is unique.”

My passion is to research light and find out how different light sources stand out from each other. The complex relations between light and time affect pictures in ways that inspire one to experiment again and again.

”There are no mistakes. There is only understanding about the reality of light, born of experimentation.”

The visual roots are entangled tightly around the 1990s demo scene – a subculture of the international computer art scene, which produced audio-visual performances. Today, the polished, perfect digital image surrounds us everywhere. It has made one wonder about the meanings of imperfection – of the processed, of the unprocessed, of reality itself. One question stands out: What is a photograph?

”Who defines what a photograph should express and how one should read it?”


”Excuse me – could I paint your soul?”

Sami Voutilainen a photo artist from the city of Jyväskylä, specializing in abstract expression. His works are light paintings, captured via the medium of camera. The main subjects of his works are the human being and its soul.

His visual roots are entangled tightly around the 1990s demo scene – a subculture of the international computer art scene, which produced audio-visual performances. His current works combine photography with painting: light is his brush, while a camera is his canvas.

The passion for photography was always there, but it wasn’t until Instagram presented a channel for reaching viewers and interpreters for the photographic art of Sami Voutilainen. The internet brought the world up close. He has successfully taken part in photography competitions – his works have received both Finnish and international awards.

Sami Voutilainen has studied photography in Jyväskylä and is currently completing a degree to become a Master of Photography at the Institute of Visual Communication (VVI) in the city of Tampere. These studies have intensified the desire to promote the visibility of the photographic arts. Sami’s works have been on display at, among other locations, the Olympus Perspective Playground in Berlin.

”I want to offer experiences and raise questions with my pictures. How do you read my pictures?”


  • 2021 – Photographer (SQ), Specialist Vocational Qualification in Media | Institute of Visual Communication (VVI), Tampere
  • 2019 – Photographer (FQ), Further vocational qualification in Media | Gradia, Jyväskylä

Solo Exhibitions

  • 2018 – Oikokatu Photo | Jyväskylä

Group Exhibitions

  • 2020 – Aika jättää jäljet | Hoikkassali, Äänekoski
  • 2019 – Aikaikkunoita | Taidekeskus Järvilinna, Laukaa
  • 2019 – Sattumia ajassa | Valon Kaupunki, Jyväskylä
  • 2019 – SKIN x | Äkkigalleria, Jyväskylä
  • 2019 – Light Up Berlin | Umspannwerk Wittenau, Berlin
  • 2018 – VII LPWA worldwide exhibition | Casablanca, Morocco
  • 2017 – Olympus Perspective Playground | Kraftwerk, Berlin

Awards and Nominations

  • 2020 – Finalist – 40th Artvita Online Art Contest
  • 2020 – Honorable Mention in Creative portrait – Finnish Photo Awards (FPA)
  • 2020 – Honorable Mention in Silhouette – International Color Awards
  • 2020 – Nominee in Fine Art & Abstract Categories – Fine Art Photography Awards
  • 2019 – Honorable Mention in Professional Fine Art Category – Monochrome Photography Awards
  • 2019 – Nominee in Fashion – Spider Awards
  • 2019 – IPA Honorable Mention – Fine Art, Portrait
  • 2019 – London Photo Festival – 3rd Abstract Photography
  • 2019 – Salon Silver medal – Shadow Hunter Circuit Montegro
  • 2019 – PSA Gold Medal – Shadow Hunter Circuit Montegro
  • 2019 – Finalist – World’s Top 10 Fine Art Photographers (One Eyeland)
  • 2019 – Shoot The Face Finalist – Shoot The Frame
  • 2019 – Honorable Mention in Creative portrait – Finnish Photo Awards (FPA)
  • 2018 – Nominee: Open Theme – Fine Art Photography Awards (FAPA)
  • 2018 – Honorable Mention in Silhouette, Amateur Category – International Color Awards
  • 2018 – Honorable Mention in Amateur Fine Art Category, Monochrome Photography Awards
  • 2018 – Honorable Mention in People: Other Category – ND Awards
  • 2018 – Honorable Mention in Special: Long Exposure Category – ND Awards
  • 2017 – Honorable Mention in Amateur Portrait Category, Monochrome Photography Awards


  • 2020 – EP – European Photographer | FEP, the Federation of European Professional Photographers

Sami Voutilainen

Email: [email protected]