Make Your Own Fake Ice Cubes For Photography Staging

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I’m an impatient person.  I’m also very singularly-minded, so when I get an idea in my head, everything else gets put on hold while I’m pursuing it (and, often making a mess in the process).

I needed some artificial ice cubes for a few personal photo projects, but I didn’t want to have to buy any or be arsed to wait for them to arrive in the mail.  So, I decided to make my own, adapting a great tutorial by Kyle May.

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Creating Realistic Looking Clouds With A Fog Machine And Water

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A few years back, we shared this tutorial on how to make some DIY clouds to use as props in your photos. It’s still a great tutorial, and certainly a much longer lasting way to make clouds than the method we’re about to show you, so remember to check it out when we’re done over here. But, first, discover the work of Berndnaut Smilde, a dutch artist who has truly perfected the science of DIY cloud making.

As the image above suggests, Smilde’s clouds are quite realistic and are made using a fog machine, water, and ingenuity. You’ve probably figured out by now these clouds are also very temporary, often only lingering just long enough to make a photo before they drift away. [Read more…]

Quick DIY Tips To Boost Your Props And Set Building Game While Working On A Budget

Okay, we know you’ve been hungry for some DIY projects, and while this clip is geared towards the video crowd, there’s still a lot of useful ideas that can be incorporated into a still photography project, too. The guys over at Film Riot came up with these DIY props and set decorations for their short film, U.F.Oh Yeah. Staying true to form, they delivered with a great clip to show you how to replicate some of their prop hacks.

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Handmade Severed Thumb USB Drive Doubles As A Creative Photography Portfolio

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As a professional photographer, it can be hard to make yourself stand out from other photographers, even if your work is really good. There’s just so many photographers out there, it’s easy to fall through the cracks. Sending out a portfolio or album of your work to potential clients just doesn’t cut it anymore. That’s exactly why pro photographer, Justin Poulsen, is making sure he “sticks out like a sore thumb”.

Working with Canadian creative agency, Rethink, Poulsen hand crafted a collection of  USB “thumb drives” which cleverly combines his knack for building his own props and his talents as a photographer. Using Body Double casting silicone, Poulsen made a mold of his thumb. He then poured in flesh toned silicone into the mold and embedded a 2GB flash drive into the “thumb”. [Read more…]

[Strong Graphics] Big Ideas, Small Budget – How To Create Fun Conceptual Images On A Small Budget

Editor note. The post has some strong graphics in it which may not be to everyones taste. Proceed with caution.

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Photography can be an expensive passion; and none of us have the budget of a small European country although sometimes it does feel like we need it to create amazing images.  In this article I’d like to share some of my favourite conceptual images that were both fun and inexpensive to create.

Whilst I understand that my slightly dark and quirky style doesn’t suit everyone, you can take the basic ideas and techniques to apply to your own style.

For each concept I’ve given the price of the items I’ve used but keep in mind that you won’t have to buy everything every time for every shoot.  A little creativity goes a long way to keeping your costs down.

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Tutorial: How To Create Film Sets From Scratch

If you are just starting out your film making career, you must have notice the issue of locations by now. The big players get to pick a location and rent it, or to rebuild it in a studio. If you only have limited budget, your second best option may be to build a set.

While a lot of times a set may look like the real thing, it is basically a collection of stand-up pieces of wood. A collection of flats standing next to each other to builds a corner of a room or (as the video demonstrates) an elevator. They are also the same panels used in theater. A fancy wall on one side, simple looking construction on the other – movie magic.

Flats are pretty much standardized and usually come in 8’x4′ which, I guess, takes the least amount of cutting to make.

Matt Brown takes you through the process of building a flat, and balancing it so it can freely stand. Now, of course once you’ve built a flat you still need to dress it up to make it look like the set you want, but this is another topic completely.

[Let’s Build Some Flats! | Matt Brown via filmmakeriq]