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Make Your Own Lightbox for Stunning Desktop Photography

By , Sunday 7th February 2016 in Projects

Close-up photography of detailed objects and good product photography both require good lighting. A light box is a great solution and this guide shows you how to build your own out of everyday objects.

A DIY lightbox is a great solution for product and macro photography. It provides subtle light diffusion and a uniform background against which to place the object.

What you'll need

  • Cardboard box large enough to fit your intended objects in
  • Sharp knife
  • Ruler
  • Spray paint
  • 2 litre round drinks bottle
  • A4 or A3 white paper, or white cloth
  • Lamps

Construction

DIY Lightbox Construction
DIY Lightbox Construction
Once you have found a suitable cardboard box, remove the flaps on the open end

 

How to build a lightbox
How to build a lightbox
On the top and sides, measure out a border around 3cm

 

DIY Lightbox Build
DIY Lightbox Build
Using a sharp craft knife, cut out the "windows" on the top and two sides.

 

DIY Lightbox Construction
DIY Lightbox Construction
Spray paint the box in a matt white paint. This will ensure better light distribution inside the light box.

 

DIY Lightbox
DIY Lightbox
Cut the top and bottom out of the drinks can, and cut a quarter segment out of the remaining cylinder. We will use this to eliminate any harsh corners on the background.

 

DIY Lightbox Construction
DIY Lightbox Construction
Once the paint is dry, attach the quarter from the bottle to the inside of the box, on the floor and the rear wall. Finally, cover the windows in plain white paper. This will help diffuse the light inside the box, especially if you use a flash.

 

Usage

Line the inside of the box using either a plain white paper or coloured paper depending on what is suitable for your subject. Place your object in the centre of the light box and position light sources to the left, right and above through the windows. Now you should have a well lit, bright setup for your product or macro photography.

You can also adjust the type of light and distance to the window to change lighting angles and brightness.

Happy Snapping!

DIY Lightbox Construction
DIY Lightbox Construction
Dragon Sculpture
Dragon Sculpture
Dragon Sculture
Dragon Sculture

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About the Author

Tim Trott

Tim is a professional software engineer, designer, photographer and astronomer from the United Kingdom. You can follow him on Twitter to get the latest updates.

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