Studio Lighting – Stainless Steel Beauty Dish

photography_equipment_beauty_dish_aa250.jpgPhotographer J. Chris Hansen built the soup bowl beauty dish for his photography studio. It was all well and dandy while it was mounted on a speedlight. But when he tried to mount the beauty dish on an Alien Bee flash they melted. Luckily for us, Chris did not give up and upgraded the design to use stainless steal bowls. From here it is all Chris.

I have been following all the beauty dishes and ringflashes that have been made. I made a number of trips to the Dollar Store and the hardware store for reflective gold and silver paint. I created some really nice dish reflectors for my Canon 550 EX flash using plastic mixing bowls, shish kabob sticks and reflective paint. The portraits of my daughter looked great. The next step I felt would be to make some beauty dishes for my Alien Bees Studio Lights. Immediately a problem occurred. The modeling lights got too hot and began melting the plastic. Hmmmnnnn. Possible fire danger here! They also didn’t look very professional.

The solution came to me while browsing at the hardware store. They had stainless steel mixing bowls on sale. Nice big ones too. So I bought two bowls, some 1/8′ allthread rod (36″), a steel bit, a steel cutting jigsaw blade (fine cut) and finally some nuts and washers for the allthread rod.

Basic Instructions:

1. Cut a hole in the bottom of the large bowl to fit on the Studio head.







2. Drill four evenly spaced holes 90 degrees apart just a little below the rim on the large bowl.



3. Cut the allthread evenly in 1/2 to make two 18” pieces.


4. Drill four evenly spaced holes every 90 degrees about 1/2 way down the side of the small bowl.


5. Nest the bowls into each other then raise up the small bowl and thread the allthread through the small bowl to center it above the large bowl (center the bowl). Put on the washers and nuts on and tighten them up.



Mount on Studio Light and shoot away. Typical distance should be 2-3 feet from subject.




Here are two sample shots taken with the stainless still beauty dish.



Have fun, God’s light and love to all, Chris

More Light Making Things With Hole in The Middle:
The Cheapest Ring Light Ever
What Can You do With Six Speedlights and a Coffee Can
The Square Ring Flash
Just Fab’s Turkey Pan Beauty Dish
The CD Spindle Ringflash
Disposable Camera Ring Flash