Web Excursions: DIY Photo Edition

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Web Excursions are select bookmarks from my travels around the interwebs, because I'm always thinking about you while discovering other people's cool stuff. You mean that much to me. You can see all of my (public) bookmarks on Pinboard, and visit the bookmarks archive for curated lists across the last few years.

Web excursions brought to you in partnership with MindMeister, the best collaborative mind mapping software out there.

I’ve been building out my video lighting setup lately. In addition to purchasing a few items, I’ve been researching DIY solutions to save (a significant amount of) money. Here are some of my favorite solutions that I’ve found thus far.

I often close the comments on the web excursions posts, but if you have some to add to this list, I’m leaving them open on this one!

DIY photography studio
Tips for various lighting scenarios (small, medium, large objects), with some DIY gems.
DIY Reliable, Cheap, Easy-to Use Universal White Balance Reference
A DIY white balance card that’s so cheap it’s practically disposable. The easiest of all the builds, and one you might even have all the materials for already.
DIY Studio Lights
This is the most involved build in this bunch, and I haven’t pulled it off yet, but the results look amazing. Adjustable brightness and temperature, diffusion, and 180° coverage.
DIY Bounce Board & Interview Lighting
There are a gazillion different tutorials on DIY bounce boards, but it’s all the same concept. A white board and a foil board. It’s not rocket science, but it’s an indispensible part of a lighting setup for both photo and video.
DIY Ring Light
A fairly simple build and a valuable addition to your lighting rig. I purchased a ring light with adjustable color temperature, which I appreciate, but for most purposes this version would be significantly cheaper and cover all the bases.
Cheap Under-Cabinet Lights Reimagined as Photography Lighting
The project link for this one is 404, but you can see enough in the build photos to understand the simple concept behind this one. Directional lighting using cheap under-cabinet lights from the hardware store and a bit of foam core.
Soft Box Build
A more involved build, but a nice soft box with track light mounting.

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