I wanted to take a picture for yesterday's letter H (Heart) with a black background. But I don't have one. The lighting in my house at night (since I can usually only take photos after work) also really stinks. So to fix both at once I used a mirror. But that's not black, right? It is if you use only tea lights for lighting since they don't really reach the ceiling.
So here's my setup. After I had the candles lit I turned off the lights in the room so the ceiling would be black.
But after I took the first couple of pictures, I realized I wasn't creating enough light with the tea lights and so I had to make a really long exposure (which is a little tricky while hand holding the camera) Really simply solved by moving the tea lights closer. When I lined up the shot I wanted I could see which lights (those on the right in this case) had to be moved back a bit. Just be careful not to light your sleeve or camera strap on fire since you are in so close. :)
And, no, the mirror is not perfectly spotless. I did clean it off with Windex but the paper towel didn't do an exact job. Also, there were a couple of tiny smear spots. If you move just a teeny bit to one side those will often disappear though so it doesn't matter too much to have it perfect. I lightened up the first image to show you the truth of how many spots are actually on the mirror.