When you’re a filmmaker or a photographer, you can get various effects by using filters, or in post. But there are plenty of cheap DIY ways to make photos and footage more interesting and achieve the mood you want. Ted Sim of Apurture shares five DIY lens tricks you can do for under $10, or even for free. These will give your movies or photos different looks and feels, and you won’t need to spend a lot of money or a lot of time editing.
1. Sunset flares
If you want to simulate the golden hour light, you can aim tungsten light into your lens just out of the frame. It will create golden washed out light and add some shine to your video or stills, especially if you’re shooting in the studio.
2. Flashback effect
If you shoot a video and want to achieve that dreamy, surreal “flashback” effect, you can do it in-camera. The trick is to (carefully!) spray some water onto the lens and open the aperture to get the front bokeh from the droplets. I wouldn’t do it myself, but I guess it would work by spraying water on a protective filter instead directly on the lens.
By spraying fog spray directly towards the lens and adding some light to it, you can create a misty effect that adds mood and depth to your shot.
4. Drinking glass
You most likely have plenty of different drinking glass at home. If you put one over your lens, you can use its curvature to distort the image in all sorts of creative ways. You can also try heating up a piece of Plexiglas and create your own custom effects.
5. Clear tape
Once again, this is something most of us have at home. Run a single strip of clear scotch tape over your lens and flash a light through it. Because of the way it refracts light and color, scotch tape creates an interesting effect.
[5 Creative Lens Hacks! | Apurture]