Wednesday, March 4

The Half Hour Light Tent

Two months ago, fed up with window sill photography, I took the plunge and made my own light tent. There are many DIY tutorials that provide a much more aesthetically pleasing finished product, but in my case, I didn't feel like measuring, outlining..etc..

This one took less than half an hour to finish. I used only what I happened to have on hand at the time...

Materials Needed:
  • cardboard box
  • scissors/knife
  • white acrylic paint
  • paintbrush
  • waxed paper
  • tape

I used a serrated knife to remove the top flaps, then cut square holes in three sides of the box.

Next I painted the inside with white acrylic paint. I had less than half of a 2 oz. bottle left, so the coverage was kind of thin and not too pretty, but it still works great. Acrylic paint dries super fast, so it was great to use for this project.

Look! So easy, a three year old can do it!

Next I covered the two side holes with waxed paper. I folded a long sheet into thirds for extra thickness, then secured to the box using packing tape.

I left the top holes uncovered so I could take shots with the camera straight down, but if you wanted to put a light straight down instead, you could cover that as well to diffuse the light.

Ah yes, the light...

For my first attempt using the light tent, I used lamps with our regular GE Reveal light bulbs. Ugh...the pictures were terrible. I played with all the white balance settings on my camera to no avail and thought the whole light tent had been a waste of time. Until I read that you need to use 'cool natural light' bulbs.

These were $9.99 each and worked like a charm...

I sill favor taking photos outside in natural light; out in the fresh air with the kids playing in the yard...

But this will get me nicely through the end of the cold season and also enables me to take pictures any time of the day.

Here are some more DIY light tent tutorials to check out:


Three Dancing Magpies said...

Thanks so much for showing how you did this quick and easy! Love your photo pendants!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this tutorial - I'm going to make one this week!

nikid said...

Great! Thanks, I was thinking of making one, you just made my life easier!!

Jewelry by Linda said...

Great work,
Would it be possible to do a tutorial on how you made this page so wide.
Or is there something on this site that tells how do this.
Linda Chandler

Sithean said...

Thank you so much! I'm not handy "at all", and this was a great, simple and easy walk-through. Love this blog (and you have the cutest little boy!) I'll be reading!