Photography is nothing without light, and there are so many creative ways to shape the light and make your photos more interesting and creative. in this video, COOPH gives you eight great DIY tricks that will turn your phone light, old plastic bottle, or drinking glass into an eye-catching lighting effect.
This is one of the ideas I saw ages ago and I’ve been planning to make it ever since. You’ll need a big white lantern and a clean plastic bottle that you’ll join together with lots of masking tape. This will merely create the shape of your cloud, so don’t worry if it looks ugly.
Then, you need to glue an LED strip around the shape and then add some fluffed up cotton to cover it all up. When you turn on the LED strips, it will look like a storm in a cloud, and the effect is pretty cool.
2. Laptop light
This is a neat idea for a little different, more creative product photography. Choose a photo or a pattern that you like and open it on your laptop. Then, take a clean mirror and place it on top of the keyboard, and add your subject on top of it. Tilt the screen downwards so that the image is reflected, and shoot away.
3. Light brush
This is one of those thingies no one knows what they’re for, but they can be a great tool for photography. COOPH suggests two ways of using light brushes. The first one is to position your subject and have them move the light brush around. The second method is that you light the subject by moving the bush around them. In both cases, you’ll need a slower shutter speed, at least 1s.
You can even make the light brush a subject of its own, as you can see in the lead image. I mentioned it in this article, and here are a few shots I made with it.
4. Liquid light
When the light goes through the water, it creates a truly beautiful effect. You can achieve it with a fish tank with a little bit of water placed so that it leans on two tables or chairs. Place the light above it and your subject below it, and voila, you’ve got yourself a “liquid light” effect. It’s similar to this setup, so you can check it out for a more detailed explanation.
5. Poetry light
When you set up the scene, use fairy lights for the foreground. Add a phone light (with a bit of a masking tape as a diffuser) to a book, and have your model “read” it for the shot. I think this kind of photos is still very popular on Instagram (so I’d probably avoid recreating it completely). Still, you can, and should, give your own twist to the scene and get creative with this idea.
6. Crystal light
This one is pretty simple: just shine a light through a glass with a pattern. You can use a smartphone or any other small light source, and you’ll get a creative effect that looks cook for portraits.
7. Dotted light
Take your tripod and attach a phone with the flashlight on. Then add something with holes on top of it. In the video, I think this is a pencil holder that guys from COOPH are using. You can also go with a pasta strainer, and I believe it’s one of the tricks most of us are familiar with.
8. Party light
I’ve always loved the effect of a disco ball. And oh man, do I miss parties! if you miss them too, you can at least utilize a small disco ball in your photography. Simply shine a light onto it and find the best angle, and again you’ll get great light for portraits. I suggest using colored lights for truly recreating the party mood. Did I say I miss parties?
Do you use any of these tricks in your photography? As you can probably conclude, my favorite is the light bush and I’ve used it in a variety of ways. Let us know what’s your favorite lighting trick.