Sunday, January 20, 2013

How to make your own, inexpensive light box

I have always wondered how the stock photos are taken. They have that perfect white background that made me always envios and angry (because I could never achieve that). After some research I found out that those photos are taken in a light tent / light box. "Very well" I tough to myself, I am going to buy one! It was even my New Years resolution to buy a light tent until I saw the price. Then I tough to myself again: WTF?! Am I really going to pay that kind of money for a white box?

That is when I decided that I can make one myself :-). In this post I will present you what materials I used and what steps I have followed.

This is what you have to do:

1. Find a box (any size that you think will fit your needs). I chose a little box of  21cm x 21cm x 23cm.

Here you can see the size of the box compared to an OPI Nail Polish. 

2. Using some wide adhesive tape, strengthen the edges of the box.

 3. With a right-angle ruler mark the lines where you will cut the sides of the box. After the marking you should see a square / rectangle (depending on your box's size). I let approximately 2 cm from the side of the box.

4. Now you need some paper or fabric to cover the empty sides of the box. I have chosen paper instead of fabric but both will work just fine.

I preferred not to glue the paper on the bottom and the top of the box. You never know when you might want to use some other color / material.

5. Now that you are ready with the box you need at least 2 lamps for lightening the box (from the sides. It is recommended to have one on top of the box, for a better white effect). For start 1 brought 2 lamps and 3 light bulbs for testing.

Costs of this project:

  • box = free, I got it along with some order I placed online
  • tape and cutter = approximately 10 RON (2 EUR)
  • white paper = I brought a roll of 50 meter for 25 RON (5.5 EUR)
  • 2 lamps = 40 RON (8.5 EUR)
  • 3 light bulbs = approximately 15 RON (3.5 EUR)
In total it cost me 20 EUR and 2 hours of work.

Some pictures taken inside the lightbox:

My plan is to make a larger lightbox for larger objects. What I will now need will be the free box and some free time (something that's really hard to get this days :-) ).

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