What do you do when a piece of gear breaks or you forget to bring it to the shoot? Or if you’re on a tight budget and can’t afford all of the professional gear you’d like? Well, you improvise and DIY it, right? I personally love turning stuff I already have into photo gear, so I loved this video from Cinecom.net. Watch as Jordy Vandeput shares nine awesome ideas for turning simple cardboard into all sorts of photo and filmmaking gear. These are all cheap, quick, and simple to make – so let’s check them out.
For all these DIY gear you’ll need a bit of cardboard plus some duct tape, markers, aluminum foil, and paper. You know, the regular stuff we all have at home. Therefore, all these “cardboard hacks” are something you can probably make immediately after you’re done reading this article and watching the video. Here’s the list of the items Jordy makes:
- A camera slider – it actually does a pretty good job for something made out of cardboard and duct tape
- A focus pull – cardboard, paper, marker and there you have it, a DIY focus pull
- A microphone stand – two pieces of cardboard and voila!
- A sunshade for camera display – Jordy calls it stupid, but man it can be so useful in the bright sunlight
- A DIY softbox – a cardboard box, some aluminum foil, and some paper, and you’ve got yourself a quick DIY softbox
- Cookie for shaping light – cut the cardboard to imitate blinds, window, propeller, or any other shape
- Cookie for foreground shapes – this time you’ll put your cardboard cutout in front of the camera to get the feeling of shooting through something (like a keyhole)
- A rocket tail for action cam – make sure to protect the camera from breaking for this one. Make the rocket tail out of cardboard and attach it to your action cam. It’s great for POV shots of a baseball or something like that. Although, I’d personally probably skip throwing my camera around.
- Filter holder for LED panel – again, two pieces of cardboard and some duct tape. It’s a pretty simple build, and it looks something like a larger version of this DIY “film holder” I made for scanning negatives.
Jordy jokingly says that some of these ideas are stupid, but I tend to disagree. Sure, some of them can’t fully replace professional gear. But, not all of us have the budget for the expensive stuff, and DIY ideas like this are perfect for us. They’re also great if you just want to experiment with both making and using a certain piece of gear, and you’re not sure whether you should invest in it. And not to mention that they could be a life-saver if your fancy gear breaks in the middle of the shoot. So, grab that cardboard, scissors and duct tape and DIY away!