How To Make A DIY Square LED Ring Light

build a ledsquare RinglightHere’s a quick and easy DIY build you can use to spice up your collection of studio lighting. Kevin Kubota walks us through the process in the 12 minute CreativeLive session, below. He uses four of these 4′ LED strip lights he found at Lowes for $34 each, so this isn’t exactly a cheap only-need-stuff-you-already-own kind of build, but I imagine if you looked around a bit, you could source some less expensive lights. With that being said, however, Kubota prefers the more expensive LED lights of florescent lights for a few reasons. Primarily, that they are much more durable than florescent; also that they draw very little power, making them ideal to use on location with his AlienBees portable power pack.  [Read more...]

20 Kick Ass Projects From Last Year

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It has been a year since I started writing for DIYP and it has been a wonderful experience sharing works and tutorials to the world, including getting to read comments (and the occasional troll which gives me a laugh from time to time) and for this one year anniversary post, I want to run down and make one blog about my personal and favorite tutorials.

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Holga Goes Digital Thanks To A Raspberry Pi And Pete Taylor’s Awesome DIY ASCII Art Hack

holg120d-frontPete Taylor’s Holga isn’t your ordinary Holga. It isn’t even your ordinary hacked Holga. In fact, you might say that Taylor’s Holga is one of the most unusual modifications you’ve seen done to one of the notoriously hacakble cameras. It started out innocently enough…

Taylor gutted an old, broken Holga to make room inside for a Raspberry Pi, which effectively turned the once medium format film camera into a digital model. To do this, he had to remove not just the guts of the Holga, but also the lens to accommodate the built-in lens on the Raspberry Pi’s computer board. He then added a wireless USB adapter. This allows him to have his 120d automatically upload the photos he takes to his blog. He also added a 49mm adapter on the lens to accept various filters, in addition to a 3.5mm camera trigger socket, a LED indicator which glows in the viewfinder when a photo is being taken, and a rotary switch that allows him to choose between photo, video, or program mode. It’s unarguably a pretty legit hack. [Read more...]

Brooke Shaden Explains How To Light Portraits With Nothing But A House Lamp

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Brooke Shaden is the kind of inventive photographer who prefers to do-it-herself rather than spends wheelbarrows of money on expensive studio lighting and modifiers. Instead, Shaden challenges us to get creative with what resources we have available to us. In this case, it was one or two basic house lamps from Ikea. (And if you really want to get elaborate with your set up, she also explains how to use a tissue to diffuse the light from the lamps.) [Read more...]

Special Optics Allow Us (And Our Cameras) To See Air Flow With The Naked Eye

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This is pretty awesome. Scientists at Harvard Science Demonstrations put out a video earlier this year that let’s us see air moving with our naked eye. The team assembled some Schlieren optics (which we’ve talked about before) by reflecting a light source from a concave mirror onto a razor blade. The optics are setup in front of a camera to record as they demonstrate the process with a hair dryer, an air filled helium balloon, and a big glass full of sulfur hexafluoride gas. You can get a preview of the setup in the image above, but be sure to watch the video for the full effect, especially if you’re not familiar with Schlieren.  [Read more...]

How To Build And Use A DIY Scrim (Made From A Portable Clothes Hanger)

I have been planning around trying to build a DIY scrim for about a month now but couldn’t think of a frame where I could start my project. First thing I thought of was making it out of PVC pipes (sadly PVC pipes are not as easy to get here), then thought of using wood for the frame. I put it aside for a while until I found the perfect frame for my new project.

A scrim is not a stand alone unit and you want a light source behind it – either a strobe, a strong continuous light or even the sun. The scrim will diffuse that light (and eat quite a bit of it during the process) into a beautiful soft light.

Normally when I go to the local mall I visit the Japan Store because almost everything there is for P88 ($2USD) and there is a LOT of stuff to choose from, so I was looking around the other day and found a portable clothes hanger for around $5.50 USD. WIN! This would be the perfect frame for my next project. (If you don’t live in the Philippines, fret not, they are pretty cheap in the US too)

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A Pocket Sized DIY Camera Stabilizer That Costs About $1 To Make

stabilizer1A monopod made from string and a bolt is an old photographers trick that can help to eliminate vertical movement and greatly reduce horizontal movement while taking photos. While it’s not necessarily a full time replacement for a tripod, the handy DIY project can certainly help you out in a bind when you need stabilization but cannot use a tripod, plus it hardly uses up any space in your gear bag. [Read more...]

Can DIY Modifiers Compete Against Pro Grade Modifiers?

Last week I wrote about why you would want to do a DIY photography project, but can it match up to pro gear? Challenge… Accepted!

This week I did a whole photoshoot using only DIY modifiers for main lights. With the help of my girlfriend and her friends to model for me, the challenge was on.

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The idea behind challenge was to prove that making your own modifiers and equipment is not all that bad compared to branded expensive material. (And before the first comment starts coming in, let me say that I do own a couple of Westcott softboxes and umbrellas, and I use them when needed or when working with high end clients, I just really like my DIY’s).

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8 Reasons To Do A DIY Photography Project

 

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I started photography about 6 years ago. I was doing a 365 day project in flickr when I saw all the great strobist shots people were taking. I wanted to give it a try but I only had one sb-24 speedlight (it’s a 1988 flash) and no light modifiers whatsoever so I needed to DIY my own lights.

I remember the first DIY project that I made, it was a 1 foot  x 1 foot  softbox made out of illustration board and tracing paper. After that I used a silver umbrella and a white shower curtain to create my own studio look and after that was history in the making.

So here are my 8 reasons why you’d wanna do a DIY project

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