This is a guest post by Ken Stewart, a real DIY pioneer. Having recently gotten into macro photography with a set of Raynox close-up lenses, I found myself wanting a macro focusing rail so I could smoothly and precisely vary the distance between my camera and the subject to get the focus right. A quick check of the web showed me that the cheapest Manfrotto slide I could find was $80 (plus tax and shipping, of course), but I figured I could do better with a little ingenuity, and an obligatory trip to Home Depot.
In this short video, Don Giannatti really packs in some stuff. The first setup is shows how to do a single strobe glamour portrait.
The second setup is an upgrade to the Three Dollar Beauty Dish by Just Fab (you may remember her from the Ghetto Studio post). Just Fab has gone from one time aluminum pans to more sturdy IKEA pans. Don also uses foam core and window sun shield (My guess is five more dollars to the setup).
The last setup is has another mode from a lightshere, an old reflector and some tissue.
It is mighty kind of Don Giannatti to share his unique lighting in this video. You can see the picture and some more explanations on lighting essentials.
Nuts, Bolts, Dye, Polypropylene, Muslin, PVC. What do all those have in common? They are all supplies for one or more DIY Photography projects.
Some projects are very easy and you can get the stuff for them by digging through your drawers or junk cabinet (If you read this post, you must have one). Other projects require a trip to the store. But which store?
This post is about helping other photographer find what they are looking for and help you find what you are looking for.
The subject of common mails and comments that I receive is asking about where to get the materials for different projects.
Since I do not live in the United States, I don’t always know where to get some of the stuff. DIYP European readers share the same problem; some of the most available supplies in the US are nowhere to be found in Europe.
So, this is where this post comes to the rescue. In the table below, I am going to list some of the more popular projects and the materials that I get allot of questions about. I’d love it if you can help fellow photographers to find some of the stuff. Post the name of your favorite stores, web stores or links to where you get your DIY supplies.
One of the things I like most on DIYP is the strong warm community that has build around it. It is more and more often that readers are sending ideas, hacks and modifications that far surpass any ideas that might be having on the late hours of the night.
Joe has tested several options before going with the cheapest and easiest solution I have seen so far. Here are his thoughts and reasons for designing a whole new Pocket wizard mount from scratch. In my mind all the other alternatives are very good and offer some advantages, but Joe’s mount is the best of class. (Check them all for great mounting ideas.)
The previous article showed how to take great liquid product shots, though the set up can work for both liquids and solids.
In this part of the tutorial Nick will show a modification of the setup that allows you to add some color effects to the shot. If you like it, stop by Nick’s flickr stream and say “Hi”. In addition to showing your appreciation, you’ll get some great studio images and setup shots. Now for todays exiting twist:
I always keep my eye on the strobist flickr pool. It is one of the best places to get your lighting ideas. The other day, I saw a cool Corona shot there made by Nick Wheeler. Nick was so kind to share his lighting technique with DIYP readers. So, the following article is a guest post by Nick Wheeler, If you like this tutorial as much as I did stop by Nick’s flickr stream and say “Hi” (You’ll also get a nice dose of fine images).
Just recently, I became the proud owner of a new dining room table. Not a massively exciting announcement you might think (and you would be right), but what was getting me excited was the fact that it had a frosted glass top. While my significant other was wondering where to put it and what to do with the old table, I was thinking “I wonder what would happen if I stuck a flash underneath it?”
The answer at first was a little disappointing but after a while I was getting some pretty good results, particularly with bottles and containers of liquid. I was finding that with light coming from underneath it was helping light up the liquid and giving it a nice glow. The only problem I was having was the table top itself. The glass was dimpled, not smooth, and while that gave a nice effect, it was not ideal for every shot. The answer of course was a spot of DIY!
One of the nice things I like about DIYP is the community that is starting to build around it. After everyone has done a round of introduction, and got to know the general audience of this blog, I must admit that I still get a kick from photographers sending a note or sharing a technique via the mail, or on the flickr group.
The setup below is a twist on the 3 lights basic setup I got on the mail from Adam Hand. It is a great setup for starters, and HEY! it is under 100$. Adam, the floor is yours:
Any one who has worked in photography for a while knows that lighting is more important than the subject, lens and camera (look at Edward Weston’s work). However, if you research studio lighting you will find that it can cost as much or more than your lens and camera.
The idea is very simple – take 6 super-duper Nikon SBs and mount them on a cut coffee can. You can use duct tape to hold them on.
Connect 3 pocket wizards with splitters to the flashes and fire away.
The time it gets me to go to work varies. If I
snooze three times and then turn the buzzer off spend some quality-coffee-time on the morning with my wife, I am bound to hit the traffic time. That means that taking my daughter to kinder garden takes 20 minutes by car (5 minutes if I jump start on the first sound of the alarm clock). Wait it gets better. Going from there to work will now take some 45-50 minutes (15-17 minutes, if I was an early bird and prepared my clothing on the previous night).
For a long while I used to hear a hilarious morning show (fun) or the news (boring crap). Why am I telling you this? Because I’ve hit the jackpot as far as turning my commuting time to something great.
If you are a big executive and have your own business card, you can cut the time it takes you to get a business card and you are at 5 seconds. The results are not professional and there is some light lost, but when all else fails, it is a neat trick to have up your sleeve. It will defiantly work for Canon internal flashes. Other brands – you might need to adjust a bit.
I got this trick in the mail from Marko Helenius. He holds a nice gallery at markohelenius.fi. Pleae go over there and have a looksy. Judging by the (small number of) studio shots, this guy knows what he is doing. Now I give the floor to Marko.