Save Precious Studio Space With This Strip Light Rack

strip-light-hanger-04

I recently moved into a new studio. It is bigger than my last one, so I absolutely had to get more gear to match its size. Here is something I learnt in the process. While softboxes and stripboxes are small when folded if you want to have them readily available, they take up quite a bit of space.

My solution to this problem was to build a Striplight rack where I could easily store any unused striplight in its natural state, while not taking too much real-estate in the studio.

[Read more…]

Make a Square DIY Ring Light for Under $10

squarelight-front

I got the inspiration for the square ring light from a trip to Vegas. The hotel bathroom had a light that ran the perimeter of the giant rectangle mirror.  I noticed the square ring catchlight in my eye and found it really interesting and wanted to reproduce this. A dozen (ok, maybe 2-3) different ideas ran through my head on how to build something the square ring light.  I settled on good ole fashioned Foamcore for the test run.

Square and Ring? I know, it’s not exactly the best term for it, but I couldn’t think of what else to call it. So here it is, the Square Ring Light.

[Read more…]

Using Suction Pads To Secure Lightstands

suction-pads-00

DIYP reader Maor Cohen of Kaveret sent us this sweet tip about using suction pads for securing light stands. It has some huge benefits over carrying several kilos per stand in sand bags. Of course they are easier to carry, not as messy, and provide more security.

The idea is kinda self explanatory from the photo, but Maor sent us some more details about this hack. The suction pad used is a triple suction cup capable of carrying up to 309lb, and originally intended for lifting glass or fixing car dents. (you can also use a smaller double cup version which will support up to 130lb).  Next you will have to secure the base of the stand to the suction mount and make sure it is tight and this is it.

[Read more…]

The 5 Minutes, $1.50 Reflector And How To Use It

Feature-image-reflector-title

I’ve already used those DIY reflectors in a couple of my articles but I’ve never actually did a full post explaining how they are built and used. I want to show you how easy it is to make this reflector and how useful it can be. Definitely a good use for $1.50. It actually takes around 5 minutes to make it and you can make it as big or small as you need.

[Read more…]

DIY: How To Build A Portable V-Flat With Customized Catchlights

diy-v-flat-custom-catchlights-02

DIY is where we started, and we love to return to it whenever possible…especially for tutorials like this.

Columbus, Ohio-based photographer Nick Fancher believes that you can “studio” anywhere, turning the most ordinary locations into quality pseudo-studios.  In this video (after the jump), Nick shows us how he constructed a simple and portable v-flat lighting configuration using (what appears to be) foam board and tape.

[Read more…]

DIY: Photographer Uses $0.5 TP Rolls To Diffuse $700 Macro Strobes

CHv5nAOUwAE9tnU

Here is a great tip we got from Mark Thorpe and it has to do both with TP rolls and with Macro photography. It turns out that there is a great way to diffuse the the $750 Canon MT-24EX Macro Twin Lite Flash.

At heart the MT-24EX is a dual strobe system that sits around the lens and enables getting the light pretty close to your subject from two sides. Close means soft light (I mean think how huge a strobe at 3cm must look to an ant), and two-sided-illumination means significant shadow reduction.

But PixelHobo who need just a little bit more diffusion, attached two rings made from old desk lamps covered with toilet paper to get an even bigger light source. Not really sure if this is more simple or more clever.

For more information about the rig, visit Mark’s G+ post.

Yup, toilet paper is definitely a must for photographers.

[Mark Thorpe]