If you are a photographer and using flash (either for studio pictures or for outdoor shooting), you are probably aware of the problems that a hot-shoe flash introduces: the shadows of an object are crisp-sharp, creating an artificial look to the object. When dealing with studio lighting, you can use a softbox to diffuse your shadows and this is an acceptable solution, but for the amateur photographer it does have some disadvantages:
1. A softbox is very expensive. A simple softbox like this softbox from Arri, can cost several hundreds of dollars. (See our big DIY softbox version)
2. A softbox is big, and can not be carried around.
The amateur photographer can compromise and us a flash mounted softbox like this softbox from Lumiquest, or a stoffen box. The problem with this one (although a minor one compared to the “big” Softboxes), is the cost, nearing 30 dollars. Well, I guess that for some 30 bucks is no big deal (and especially no big deal for photography equipment), but I am going to try and do even better.
In the following tutorial, I will demonstrate how to make your own flash mounted, homemade softbox (view results).
You will need two good hands, and some patience, but your reward will be a nice softbox for the cost of only 3-4 dollars. (Not to mention that wonderful feeling of cutting and gluing, like you are small kids again).