Lightbox Instructional

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Photograph your razors as if they were jewelry, because there is a certain technique to photographing jewelery that always produces those wonderfully magic magazine type images. The majority of this information deals with lighting, and the way the light reflects (or doesn't reflect) off the razor. You want to use what's called diffuse lighting (I know some people may or may not know what that means, so I'm not trying to offend anyone if it sounds a bit elementary).

What is diffuse lighting, and what do I need?[edit | edit source]

Look at a light bulb in a lamp with no lamp shade... that is NOT diffused. Now look at it with the lamp shade, that is diffused (somewhat). Basically you diffuse light when you put something directly in front the light that is going to change the pattern of light after it goes through whatever material. Now generally pro photographers will use all kinds of fancy specially made diffusers and crap they buy because hey, they need tools and equipment that will serve them and last them a long time, just like anybody else who does a regular job or a furiously good hobbyist.

So how do you diffuse lighting at home without buying a bunch of photography stuff? Use whatever you can find. Some old white t-shirts, thin white pillow cases (please don't use your good shirts and pillow cases).

I'll try not to repeat a lot of photography advice you can find by quickly Googling but I did want to mention the diffuse lighting. It is probably the single biggest thing I see that people can improve on. A quick Google turned up this link to Jewelry photography tips - how to photograph jewelry

Now if you ask me (or if you don't even) I'm gonna tell ya that looks like an ad for the photography equipment you see them using. I will admit, that EZcube thing is a nice tool to have to take photos of products. But in all honesty you can have nearly the same thing by buying one of these

Get it in white from your local flea market, or Walmart, or wherever you can find it dirt cheap, and not pay that ungodly $15 Bed Bath and Beyond is asking. I think last time I checked the local flea market here sells those for about $1-$2. Cut a hole out of one side (look how the EZcube is setup for reference) and take a couple/few OLD white t-shirts, cut them down to size and drape them over or use some small spring loaded clamps to keep them in place (whatever works for you).

As for lighting, no need to get fancy, if you want to add a little cheap lighting to the deal get yourself 2.5 Million Candlelight Power Cordless Spotlight, 1 or 2 of these.

And set them to the outsides of your homemade EZcube. Play with distance of the lights to the cubes, different angles (up, down, front, back... etc).

Try if you can to use a tripod (even for the digital point and shoots). The more still your camera is, the more likely you'll get a nice crisply focused picture (assuming you got your focus right ).

I wanted to try to keep this on the simpler side, as most folks here probably haven't gotten into the whole DSLR world, and they just want to know what they can do to improve the photos they take with their point and shoots.

Oh and one more thing, definitely play with the settings on your own camera and really LEARN how it works. That will save you a lot of post processing frustration.

Building your lightbox for US$ 0.00[edit | edit source]

  1. You will need a 14" x 14" cardboard box
  2. Cut two of the top flaps, leaving only the right and left flaps (when lying on its side)
  3. Cut out three of the four sides, leaving about 1" borders
  4. Taped thin white translucent paper (like we use to wrap razors for shipping) over the holes. The original author used table paper from the exam tables at his office. Ensure that the paper is taut in order to minimize funky reflections.
  5. Use two lamps with 75W bulbs (higher wattage might be useful).
  6. Cut up some white poster board, just enough to snug in the box with a nice smooth bend (not crease) in the bottom back side. Again, make sure you keep this clean (that means, wash all that MAAS off your hands!)

The one thing you might want to invest in, if you do not have one already, is an inexpensive tripod, especially if you will do this a lot (for selling razors).

Here are other sources for making your own Light Box:

Acknowledgements[edit | edit source]

The original article was posted by richardhead. [1] and added to by dhatcher. Building instructions by RayG[2]

References[edit | edit source]