DIY Lightbox

I built a light box today. No one in my family is making items to sell on eBay or Etsy. I do not make any income from product photography. I really have no reason for a light box except as an experiment. 

The Internet is full of DIY instructions to transform cardboard boxes into light boxes, but I decided instead to go upscale and use PVC tubing instead. Why PVC? Because I lacked a suitable cardboard box.

After bribing my son with a drive through Dunkin Donuts, we went to the hardware store and returned with this:

Extensive Parts List:
3 ten foot lengths PVC
8 three way joins
3 utility lights
3 daylight 5000K lights

To this collection we added a white sheet and poster board already on hand. The price was under $60 which was more than I intended to pay. Lighting was the most expensive components. I've seen light tents selling for a little more money, but they lack the satisfaction of building it yourself.

(Not) Complex Instructions:

Step 1 Cut PVC into segments. Length is up to you. I chose 22 inches.

Step 2 Make a box. Everything fit together so tightly I didn't even bother with glue.

Step 3 Clamp on lights and cover with cloth and slide in the poster board. While you can clamp the lights to the cube, I turned the little wooden table you see in the pictures above upside down and clamped the lights to the legs. I originally built the table with my son as a surface he could use to assemble Legos. Since he as outgrown his Legos, I put the table to other uses.

Step 4 Put a camera on a tripod and put something inside the lighbox.

Step 5 Take pictures.

Try different lighting combinations. Use all three lights. Two lights. A single light. Re-position the lights. I also tried swapping out the white poster board with another we had on hand.

Overall this was an easy project and something new to play with. I am already thinking about what I can stick in the box next.

1 comment:

  1. Great job. I think after looking online for ideas, I'll build this as opposed to just a box.