6.08.2011

DIY Light Box

I haven't got the greatest camera. It's just a point and shoot digital camera that I bought about 5 or 6 years ago. I wanted to take better pictures of my projects to post on ravelry and on this blog but buying a new camera wasn't an option. I found some cheap, DIY alternatives around the interwebs and decided to make my own Light Box from what I already had around the house (and I really mean that I had this stuff already - not one of those "Make this from stuff you probably already have!" DIYs that require stuff that I definitely do not have). So here's how to make a Light Box to take pretty-good-quality pictures with a not-so-good camera! And if you look at the picture above, you'll see that I made 2 (yes! that's a light box INSIDE a light box)!


It's pretty self-explanatory, but I'll give you the rundown anyway. First, cut off the flaps of your box that you use to shut it. (Be careful not to sever any appendages!) I actually left mine on, and taped them to each other in order to make a bigger box (does that make sense?). Next, cut windows in 3 sides of your box: 2 will be the sides of your light box and the 3rd will be the top. The bottom of the box and 1 side will be left as is. The opening of the box will become the front of your light box, where you will place your camera. Now tape some wax paper over the windows that you've just cut out. Finally, tape a piece of poster board or paper inside the box to make a backdrop for your subject. Make sure it doesn't crease, but just drapes down to the front of the box. 
Lighting is something you'll want to play with to see what you think works best. I use a goose-neck desk lamp above my light box and another goose-neck clip-on lamp on the side. I've put natural light bulbs in both of them to get the whitest light possible. 
There are lots of variations to this version of a light box. Instead of wax paper, I've seen people use fabric or tracing paper. The color of the poster board doesn't have to be white, of course, either. I'm much happier with the quality of my pictures now. Take a look at the before and after pictures of my Snail Tape Measure above! 

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