Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Macro Photography Light Box

So, I'm sure you all have spent thousands of dollars for photographic equipment, right? I've seen your photos, you know who you are. Your photos look BETTER than the actual food does. I don't know how you do it, but I'm working on my skills in that area. So watch out!

My first salvo at leveling the playing field (Aside from a new camera, ahem) is to have a Macro Photography Light Box. Yeah, that's right, diffused light, different colored light, shadowless, beautiful photography by the use of a light box.

Thanks to a site I found called Strobist I decided to build my own. Yeah, build my own, right at home. So here it is:

I went to the grocery store and got an empty cardboard box. Then went to an art store and bought some semi-transparent vellum (or you can use tracing paper or even cheesecloth) as well as some various colored construction paper.

I then cut two sides out of the box as well as the top. Then cut the vellum to fit the three openings and duct taped it all around. Voila....... light sources from the sides and from above, and there ya go, a light box.

Cut some colored, or plain white construction paper the width of the opening and slide it along the box and up the far side. Bingo! Check it out!


Total cost: $6.49

I know you're probably laughing at me, and I would laugh too, but here are a sample of the first photos taken inside the box:




13 comments:

dp said...

I love this idea! I tried doing something with poster board and special bulbs, but didn't make it as one unit. I had to take it apart whenever I was done and it got to be too much of a hassle.

The photography part of blogging is very challenging for me. I just don't have an eye for "the perfect shot". I end up taking a gazillion and hope a couple are usable. Luckily I'm not a perfectionist and can live with a shadow or two :-)

Happy photographing!

The Merlin Menu said...

Hey DP,

You are too modest. I have your blog on my RSS reader and your photo's are wonderful....

Thanks for the visit and the kind words...

Sally said...

Amazing, thank you. Shall try the same. Off to get a box now.
Have been after a light box for yonks. Sal. xx

Maggie said...

I've seen this done with PVC pipe but your idea is so much easier. I really like your shot of the carrots. I sprang for a set of fancy Lowell lights but sent them back. I know it makes me a crazy purist but it just wasn't what was fun for me.

Lori Lynn said...

Looks great. I like how the background is infinite.
Lori Lynn

Kevin said...

I have been wanting to try using a light box. It looks like it is fairly easy to make one on the cheap.

jDub said...

u r my hero. what a FANTASTIC idea. thanks for sharingg!!!

Anonymous said...

Ron, mine is made and am really chuffed with it. See my blog, for my efforts please and a thank you.
Sally. xx

HappyTummy said...

hello mr merlin,i am a new blogger and i applaud you for your very brilliant idea! Clap clap clap!and with this, i also made my light box but not as neat as the one you made! (heeheehee!) many thanks for your tips and for giving a big chunk of hope to those who cannot spare thousands to buy the high tech gadgets! cheers to great food and beautiful photos!

The Merlin Menu said...

Thanks for the kind words HappyTummy. And congratulations on starting a blog. If I can help you in any way, just let me know.

TheMerlinMenuj

zoom yummy said...

Oh, what a gorgeous and brilliant idea! I love it! :) Petra

Safiyyah said...

What kind of lights and bulbs are you using? Thanks for sharing!

The Merlin Menu said...

You should use bulbs with a Color Temperature of 5,000 Kelvin as these are closest to natural light.