Saturday, March 27, 2010

freeze frame!

so you came up with a great product, and now you need pictures for craft show applications and online selling.  i myself am certainly no annie liebowitz, but i don't think my pictures are the worst in the world, either! 

i never had much luck with the pre-fab light tents you can buy online: they're bulky when set up, and i couldn't get the lighting right.  my current studio size constraint does not allow me to have a ginormous photo area, but i still wanted to have it set up all the time.  these factors led to the construction of my current photo box set-up:

obviously budget was an issue for me with this project...notice the "light tent" on the center fixture?  yep, it's a piece of tissue paper taped to the light.  luckily i already had some of the supplies, including the light fixtures and halogen light bulbs (hint: a photographer friend of mine recommends using halogens).  the blue backdrop is a sheet of scrapbooking paper from michael's (less than $1).  i purchased a piece of foamcore from my local dollar tree for $1.  that put my grand total at $2!  sweet!  here's the lowdown on what you will need:

a victoria-beckham straight-edge, or a ruler
a writing utensil
scotch tape
packing tape

first, measure out 4 squares, all of the same measurement.  since i needed my light booth to rest on a fairly small area, i measured out four 12 inch x 12 inch squares.   next, tape the edges on the outside of the light booth with scotch tape.  i taped mine 'til it felt relatively sturdy, then added packing tape on the outer seams for extra stability.  last, play around with your lighting and camera settings. 

here's some photos of my work in progress:

i decided i needed to construct an elevated glass table to help eliminate shadows in my photos.  it works pretty well - sometimes i get a bit of glare on the glass from whatever shiny thing i'm photographing -  but other than that i'm pretty pleased with the results i've had using my d-i-y photo table:

want to make a photo table of your own?  here's how: 

first, i bought a white photo frame (clearance at michael's for $1.99), and removed the back-easel area.  next, i removed the glass from the frame, put e-6000 epoxy in each of the four corners of the frame, put the glass back, and let that cure for a bit.  last, i epoxied clothespins in each corner for legs. 

voila!  i love my little photo table!


  1. Nice tutorial! I wondered how you created the floating effect - i assumed it was on a u-shaped plexi stand but glass makes more sense - easier to clean and scratches less easily. And I love that scrapbook paper - I've bought that exact one from Michael's myself! Your work looks fabulous in your new photos!

  2. thanks, freshie! i'm thinking about you and sending good vibes your way...and zero's way, too!

  3. This is a great tutorial. Simplicity of design and low-cost, what else could anyone ask for?