Making a light box

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  • 02-26-2010, 12:44 AM
    Frog
    Making a light box
    I've looked at several sights that have ideas for making you own lightbox and have decided that it looks pretty easy so shouldn't take me more than a year and 200 tries.

    Most say to get poster or foam board. With my recent experience with this stuff, I'd like to find something else that works as well. The foam board one a friend gave me to use to shoot some pics for him shows every little mark. If I push the product a tiny bit to line it up, there's another scratch.
    Anyone used something else that's cheap?
    Also what do you suggest for light bulbs? I'm not going to buy fancy lights for one project.
  • 02-26-2010, 06:21 AM
    mjs1973
    Re: Making a light box
    I would think a simple piece of white poster board would work. As far as lights go, you can buy daylight balanced CFL's at a home improvement store or even Walmart. Stick them in a desk lamp and your good to go. I have a daylight balanced CFL in a reading lamp that I can clip onto a table. It has a flexible arm so I can position the light where I want it.

    Here is a design for making a light tent.

    http://www.diyphotography.net/homest...ple-light-tent
  • 02-26-2010, 08:32 AM
    OldClicker
    1 Attachment(s)
    Re: Making a light box
    Here's mine again - just a cardboard box with holes cut in the sides and top and garbage bag taped over the holes. The lights are 100W daylight fluorescents in three shop lights (only one shows in the pic). My backgrounds (green in pic) is just poster board. TF



    Attachment 76652
  • 02-26-2010, 08:39 AM
    Frog
    Re: Making a light box
    Thanks Mike. My wife says foam board is just two poster boards with foam in the middle.
    I hope she is wrong because I want nothing further to do with foamcore board.
    I also figured daylight balanced or full spectrum lights would work fine but read different stuff all the time so just wanted to check.
    I'll probably incorporate your sites and several others into whatever I end up with.
  • 02-26-2010, 09:13 AM
    Don Kondra
    Re: Making a light box
    Alzo digital has both a selection of light tents including paper sweeps and the proper 5500k light bulbs.

    http://alzodigital.com/online_store/light_tent.htm

    Cheers, Don
  • 02-26-2010, 09:20 AM
    Old Timer
    Re: Making a light box
    Frog for cheap and easy take a look at Alison's Jan. 24 blog.

    http://alisongreenwoodphotography.bl...uary-2010.html
  • 02-26-2010, 10:12 AM
    Frog
    Re: Making a light box
    Thanks for all the ideas.
    I'm taking a little here and a little there .
    Alison's is definitely the simplest.
    I'll have to make it with a lid with a hole for the lens as I will have to shoot straight down..
    Will post a shot of the results. I'll be scrounging all my junk collection.
  • 02-27-2010, 08:46 AM
    Grandpaw
    Re: Making a light box
    I am probably going to get jumped on for this question but here it goes. If you use regular lights that you have around the house and do a manual white balance setting, what difference would it make which bulbs are used? Jeff
  • 02-27-2010, 08:55 AM
    Don Kondra
    Re: Making a light box
    No problem at all, as long as you are shooting in a totally dark room.

    Daylight is ~5500k and normal light bulbs are ~3800k ? which is quite yellow. Mixing two light sources is problematic.

    Cheers, Don
  • 02-27-2010, 09:00 AM
    gahspidy
    Re: Making a light box
    Building one yourself is great and simple, but if you wanted to just get something thats already done and that can be folded up and stored away easily until its needed next, try a simple light tent. Not too expensive. You can turn the tent so that the opening is at top for shooting down on the items. You can pleace a smooth paper of whtever color you like to place the objects on. Whichever way you go, make sure you cut off all abient light in the room by stopping down and using a low iso and make sure to light the box with the same lights and bulbs if using more than one.
    http://www.adorama.com/SVLB20.html
  • 02-27-2010, 10:15 AM
    Don Kondra
    Re: Making a light box
    FYI the Adorama tent comes with two fabric sweeps.

    The Alzo Digital comes with four paper sweeps.

    Cheers, Don
  • 02-28-2010, 10:22 AM
    JamesV
    Re: Making a light box
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Frog
    Thanks for all the ideas.
    I'm taking a little here and a little there .
    Alison's is definitely the simplest.
    I'll have to make it with a lid with a hole for the lens as I will have to shoot straight down..
    Will post a shot of the results. I'll be scrounging all my junk collection.

    Great thread Frog...

    Got me wanting to do one also. Looking around on the web and reading the problems that you encountered, I would like to see what you come up with and your thoughts on it. Then I would like to start one and see how it comes out.

    James
  • 02-28-2010, 09:24 PM
    Frog
    Re: Making a light box
    Probably be a week or so before I get to it, but will post when I'm finished.
  • 02-28-2010, 11:19 PM
    Shebang
    Re: Making a light box
    I'll be watching, too.
  • 03-30-2010, 06:33 AM
    JamesV
    Re: Making a light box
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Frog
    Probably be a week or so before I get to it, but will post when I'm finished.

    Frog, any update in this project?

    James
  • 03-30-2010, 08:22 AM
    Frog
    Re: Making a light box
    Sorry! I ended up simplifying even more by getting some poster board and cutting it out to fit in the awful foam board box.
    Since I was shooting from straight overhead, the open top was ideal and I had it set up outside in a sunless location.
    One thing I learned is that if you are going to be touching the same place on something white over and over, it would be wise to wear plastic gloves.
    When I was shooting the charms, everything looked clean but a lot of the later charms seemed to end up with this yellowish brownish smudges around them.
    Finally figured out it was skin oil and what not from touching the same place over and over. Put a charm down, pick a charm up, put a charm down, etc.