Photographer J. Chris Hansen built the soup bowl beauty dish for his photography studio. It was all well and dandy while it was mounted on a speedlight. But when he tried to mount the beauty dish on an Alien Bee flash they melted. Luckily for us, Chris did not give up and upgraded the design to use stainless steal bowls. From here it is all Chris.[Read More…]
The DIYP Flickr group is a great place to get inspired, both for projects and image Ideas.
The images submitted are a feast to the eye and the DIY projects shown are the source for the reader’s projects column (this column is all DIYP readers, so thank you).
If you have a Flickr account, join the group and start
splashin’ around sharing your pictures. We have 1,738 Members so far, and the numbers are growing.
If you are already in the group, wouldn’t it be great to get some inputs from the DIYP community? By sending your pictures to the pool, you share it with everyone. (And if you don’t have a Flickr account, you can get one here.
Below, I’ve tagged some of my pool favorites. (Well, 99% from the pool. There are just a few favs from other contacts).
Six free photography eBooks (+ two halves) for your reading pleasure. Click the title and go to the download link on the as marked at the end of each section.
This is where the entire DIYPhotography blog started. A complete tutorial on creating a studio from nothing but PVC pipes, Ripstop nylon and Nikon SBs. Creating studio photography systems like the Ghetto Studio, the Backdrop Stand and Reflector Holders, are all covered in this book.
[26 mind expanding pages, click on "Download the Tinker Tubes book"]
Or should I say by The Strobist. The complete nothing but a strobe lighting guide. This is a great book for the starting photographer covering the following topics in depth:
– On The Go Lighting Gear: Clamps, Umbrellas, Swivels, …
– Strobe Lighting Techniques: Bounce, Bare Bulb, Hard Light, Ambient Balancing, and more
– Creative Flashware: Gels, Gobos, Ball Bungees
If you liked the book, you’ll surly love the blog.
[36 pages, click the "mirror" on the UPDATE section at the bottom]
Jpeg mag is one of the better photography magazines out there. This photography magazine features readers photos (selected by readers), and also great articles (written by readers). In fact JPG mag is very similar to an online forum only it is printed. How cool is that?
In fact it is so cool that you can download a PDF version of any issue right from the JPG mag site. Go to "Issues" on the top banner, select the desired issue and click Download PDF on the right hand side. (Of course, you still order the JPG magazine in print).
OK, so this is not exactly a book, which makes it the first half of the six and three halves.
[pages vary, click the download issue on the right hand side]
This is a great book for any digital photographer using Lightroom (and don’t we all). The Image Space is a blog dedicated to Lightroom Tips, and the books covers areas like:
– Using Lightroom full power to organize your images
– Making the best of the develop module
If you liked this book, you can follow the online Lightroom tips and tricks here.
[34 pages, click on "Download the free Lightroom tips eBook"]
Jake O’Connell posted a comment, sharing his Ringlight in the CD Spindle Ringflash post. When doing this he also reminded me of a great macro tip. This photography tip is extremely useful when photographing flowers, but also when photographing “cold” drinks. It can also be applied when photographing some surfaces.
If you are a seasoned macro photographer, you can skip this tip, otherwise, keep reading.[Read More…]
Hai was the next inline for the Team Portrait Project.
Hai is just the kind of guy who wonders around and fixes things up. Be it the shelf on the wall, the air conditioning tunnel or the cable modem which we work on – none will stay broken if they are near Hai. Ever saw Pulp Fiction? Remember the great role Harvey Keitel did as THE WOLF? This is what I am talking about.
Another thing you get to hear allot when you are around Hai is “This is not optimized”. Before you know it, Hai will tweak it, bend it, re-assemble it and fry it to make it “more optimized”. This is how Hai got to be THE OPTIMIZER.
The last month has been both busy and great for me. A year and a half long project came to a successful end at work, allowing me to continue with my team photography project. I have also made my annual pilgrimage to B&H – the Mecca of photography and got some new gear. I will post my loot soon, along with some reviews of the items I bought. And to top chocolate with cream, the activity on the web has been great – now, more then ever, photographers are blogging about their projects, ideas and art. I feel privileged to share some of the reading I have done in the last month.
- Up and Down, Forward and Back, Left and Right
Earth Bound Light
A nice overview describing the alternative we have when we don’t like the composition of a picture. As the title suggests, it involves moving in any direction. (Which reminds me how my papa used to say "we did not have zoom lenses, we have to walk if we wanted to re-frame" and "We did not have a school bus, we had to walk barefoot in 15 miles of snow to get to school").
- Making a Pinhole Lens for (D)SLR Cameras
Ever felt bad for not being in the photography business when pinhole cameras were the fashion? Not to worry! This tutorial from Camera Hacker will show you how to create a pinhole camera from your Mega $$$$ DSLR.
- Film Photography: 5 Things I Really Miss
Pro Photo Life
Speaking about old school, he is one post that is all nostalgia. All the buttons and levers that we now no longer have are there.
- The Three Properties of Light
The three most basic properties of light are Quantity, Quality and Direction. L7 Photo covers those three basic properties with some examples.
- Your Guide to Adobe Bridge: File Processing
Brian is running a great series on Adobe Bridge (and Adobe Camera Raw in general). The recent addition explains the basics of files processing. (If you are into file organization, check the comments on this post with lots of ideas on how to name your files).
- Subtractive Lighting: Creating Drama with Contrast
Lighting tutorials are scarce and worth mentioning. This tutorial from Don covers Subtractive lighting – Don’s
2 cent1000$ on handling reflections at the studio.
- Tip: Using light stands outside
Description Andy combines photography and camping to create the ultimate never-fly-away-lightstand. (and here is DIYP solution for the same problem)
- 7 Signs That You Should be a Professional Photographer
If you’ve got this tickle in your hands and you want to go pro. Benchmark against seven signs that will help you make the decision. It is interesting (as Ryan mentioned in the comments) that taking good pictures is not in the list.
- Setting the Background in Stock Photography
Leggnet Digital Capture
Rich Legg shows the importance of having some theme setting objects in the background of a shot.
- On Assignment: Par For the Course
Description David Hobby is back doing on assignments posts, each a gem. Step into the mind of The Strobist to gain some small lighting ideas and setups.
Want to keep track of my favs? Befriend me at Stumble Upon, or just check in every once in a while.
DIYP reader Chaval Brasil came up with an ingenious way to create a ring flash. By routing the light from a hot shoe flash to a CD spindle, Chaval was able to surround his lens with light. Chaval joins a long tradition of readers projects that we had here on DIYP (see The Food Saver Omnibounce, Thomas Schwenger Complete Two Seconds Lighting Kit, and The Christmas Tree Ring Light for more readers projects).
Over the last few weeks I got a few emails asking me what is the drive behind DIYP. That sent me to my deep observations state where I had some discussions with myself on the reasons I keep DIYP. When trying to understand my reasons, I also understood that the reasons for sharing your photographic know how are universal (pardon for the cheesiness). So here are (my) Seven Reasons to Share Photographic Know How Online. [Image by JennyHuang]
1. You Get to Pay Somthin’ Back
I’ve never went to art school. In fact I’ve never even took a photography class. All that I know (and it is not much) came to me from reading photography books, asking around, participating in online forums, and reading blogs. Making an online blog gives me the privilege of sharing some of this knowledge back with the great community of photographers out there.
2. It’s Contagious – Join the Party
In the beginning there were only few online photography blogs, but look where we are now, Strobist, Chase Jarvis, Jim Talkington, Lighting Mods, Digital Photography School, Lighting Essentials – All out to share what they know. The more sites site are joining the sharing festival – the better the online photographic scene is.
If you did not meet Nick Wheeler (Flickr Stream – a must) until now, you are in for a treat. Nick is what I call a Lean Mean Studio DIY Machine. Unlike the softbox for a hot shoe flash and the softbox made from a well…. a box, this softbox design by Nick is as close to a real life studio softbox design as a softbox can be. As always, Nick has done great job of documenting his work so all the DIYP community can benefit. Making this studio grade softbox takes some time and effort, but well worth the investment.
While this project is great, Nick calls it a prototype and plans on a follow up. Keep tuned to Nick’s Flickr stream – you’ll soon realize that you came for the DIY projects but stayed for the great photography. It all Nick from here on.
This is a DIY project I have had in mind for a while now. When I purchased my studio flash heads, they came with a couple of small softboxes. Although I prefer to use translucent umbrellas whenever I can (small, light, easy to transport), there are times when a softbox is a better solution. While I could use the studio head softboxes in some circumstances with my small strobes, there was no way of effectively holding the flash in place without a lot of jerry rigging. To this end, I wanted to design a softbox that would be light, reasonably strong and durable, adaptable (double diffuser, grid attachment, barn doors etc.) at a later date and have a quick and easy way to mount the flash.
While I achieved most of these goals, the finished softbox was a bit heavier than I would have liked and as is usually the case with these projects I figured out a number of modifications I would like to incorporate into my next attempt after it was finished. For now, I think I will label this as a ‘prototype’ and hopefully come up with something better for the mark II version.
After two brilliant videos from Jim Talkington dealing with studio lighting on a budget, comes something completely different.
Photographer and DIYer Guy Montag came up with a nice and easy I-have-no-idea-about-electronics way to make high speed photography shots.
More chat and the video tutorial after the jump.