The 5 Minutes, $1.50 Reflector And How To Use It
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.
What you will need
- Illustration board or foam board
- Tape and scissors
- Clamps or binder clips
- Aluminum foil or Silver Gift Wrapping Paper
- Optional: Gold wrapping paper
How to do it:
Step 1 – setting size
Cut a piece of the foam (or illustration) board the size you want. I make mine quite small because I mostly use them for my still life photography.
Step 2 – foil
Cut a bigger piece of aluminium foil or silver gift wrapping paper. I used aluminium foil before but have used silver gift wrapping paper when I had non available (don’t ask).
Step 3 – matching
There are two ways to do this. If you have double stick tape you can just put double stick tape on the board and stick the aluminum foil to it.
If you only have good old regular tape, fold the aluminium to the back of the board and tape it. Do this for all sides. If you have excess foil or wrapper on the sides, just cut it away.
Step 4 – placement
Use your clamp or binder clip to make your mini reflector stand.
After that your done! Gotta admit, well spent 5 minutes and several cents. Making a few of those will probably set ou back a buck fifty.
Testing out the 5 minutes reflector
First, have a look on how adding a few of this those little reflectors can impact your photo
For this test I used one light thru a softbox on the right, facing the subject
I placed a DIY reflector on the opposite side of the softbox to fill in the shadows.
I placed another one just beside the camera to get some highlight near the shutter and and more fill on the grip.
To get some “catchlights” on the lens, I carefully placed a reflector in front of the camera and angled it so that I got some nice catchlights and a little bit fill light on the lens itself.
Lastly, my last reflector went on the left-back side of the camera to get some highlight on the side of the the camera and also some highlights on the left side of the lens hood.
Here are some examples of using this reflector on previous tutorials.
A really big diy reflector: Build A $300 Music Stand Triflector For $29
You can also use this reflector to get some back light on your subject by reflecting the main light: How To Shoot The Perfect Perfume Shot Using El Bokeh Wall
Laya Gerlock is a Portrait and Product photographer based in the Philippines. His passion is teaching and sharing his knowledge in Photograpy and has been doing this for 6 years. You can follow his work on his web page, follow him on Flickr and if you happen to come by Cubao, Quezon City (To Manila, Philippines) he gives a great workshop!