October 19, 2010

$10 DIY Light Box


It appears the sun has officially left Portland for a few months (like 8).  It’s too dark when I get home from work to take pictures with natural light and it has been too cloudy and rainy on the weekends.

So, I read a few tutorials on building your own light box.  Like this one and this one. It didn’t look too complicated.  I already had a stack of white foam core boards that I usually use to shoot pictures on.  I bought two clip-on lights at Target for $5 each, taped the boards together with packing tape and added a piece of tag board for a continuous back drop.  I used Reveal 40 watt bulbs. Update: I replaced the original lights with 2 clip-on fixtures with 120watt, full-spetrum flood lights from Home Depot. The fixtures were $8 each and the bulbs were about $10. They made a HUGE difference.

Here is a shot with the light box:


With light from a regular incandescent bulb on a piece of foam core (outside of the light box):


With flash:


Now, this light box is far from perfect but there is a blatant difference between pictures with and without it. It saves a ton of laborious editing time (More time for actual crafting!).

In the near future I will add some brighter lights and full spectrum light bulbs.  I also need to find a bigger sheet of tag board or fabric for the back drop.  I’ll keep you posted if anything works exceptionally well.

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