Introduction: Cigarette Packet Flash Diffuser

Ever wanted to take indoor photos at night, but hate the washed out look which your built in flash creates? I've often been at a pub and found the regular flash to be a bit of a pain. Thanks to a little drunken curiosity and an attention span problem, I created a flash diffuser using only an empty cigarette packet.

Step 1: Equipment Needed

SLR with built in flash
Cigarette packet
pocket knife

Step 2: Quit Smoking.

This will not only provide you with the empty cigarette packet, but it will improve your health, make climbing stairs easier and probably save you enough money to buy a real external flash unit.

if you don't smoke, I'm sure your friendly neighbourhood chain smoker will provide you with an empty.

Step 3: Removing the Foil

Remove the foil from inside the pack, taking care not to tear it. Once the foil is removed, reverse it so the shiny side is facing inwards. Then reinsert the reversed foil into the packet. This provide a reflective surface to bounce the light out of the box.

Note: With some brands of cigarettes, you can skip this step as the foil is already facing shiny side in.

Step 4: Attach to the Camera

This one's pretty obvious.

Feel free to adjust the angle of the packet's lid, to differ the angle of the flash spread. Also, experiment with position of the box. Reversing the box may also help.

The more upright your flash unit is and the lower the ceiling is, the better the results.

Step 5: Results

Here is a before and after shot to demonstrate the difference. These shots were taken in a fairly dark place with relatively high ceilings.

I no way will this replace a $400 external flash unit, but it is improvment on what you already have using something that you can probably find on the floor the next time your at a pub.

more examples can be found at my flickr site.

Created by Dan and Andy
http://thekevinbaconexperiment.blogspot.com/

Comments

author
CompensationI made it!(author)2017-01-18


Truly
the best blog I never got such information before this thanks.
<a
href="http://lucidsmoke.com/">E-LIQUID</a>

author
CompensationI made it!(author)2017-01-18

Truly
the best blog I never got such information before this thanks.


http://lucidsmoke.com/

author
CompensationI made it!(author)2017-01-18


Truly
the best blog I never got such information before this thanks.http://lucidsmoke.com/

author
LisaJ90 made it!(author)2016-10-03

Have
bought a number of want to they e
cigarette and had and this is by far the best experience I have had in a
number of ways. 1st. The nicest, friendliest most beautiful colors uses in it
you could ask for - did everything in his power to make it easy for us…http://subohmcell.com

author
Lloyd_Hayes made it!(author)2016-03-29

This is not a good idea. The color in the box diffuser will be introduced into whatever your subject is. This can also introduce a color crossover.

You can simply use a piece of white paper of even tissue paper and a rubber band or tape around the built-in flash for a better effect.

If you are using a flash in the hotshoe of the DSLR camera, simply point the flash up and rubber band a piece of white card to the flash with a the card sticking above the flash by between 2 to 4 inches. Many hotshoe flashes come with a white plastic card for just this reason.

Both of these ideas will work better then a cigarette box.

(Note: This is the 4th time that I have tried to post this. Hopefully this website will display my text properly, which has been the problem 3 previous times.)

LWH12786.JPG
author
Lloyd_Hayes made it!(author)2016-03-29

Not only have I had a problem getting my text right here, but this website wants to displlay my posts twice each time.

author
Lloyd_Hayes made it!(author)2016-03-29

This is not a good idea. The color in the box diffuser will be introduced into whatever your subject it. This can also introduce a color crossover.

You can simply use a piece of white paper ot even tissue and rubber band or tape around the built-in flash for a better effect.

If you are using a flash in the hotshoe, simply pint the flash up and rubber band a piece of white card to the flash with a the card sticking above the flash by between 2 to 4 inches. Many hotshoe flashes come with a white plastic card for just this reason.

Both of these ideas will work better then a cigarette box.

LWH12786.JPG
author
StuartB44 made it!(author)2016-03-03

I prefer the before pictures, the after one's look like they've be left in a smoke filled room and have turned yellowy brown.

author
impied made it!(author)2016-03-03

This is such a clever idea! Now to find a smoker ...

author
hovawart made it!(author)2016-03-03

If you're at a bar, you could order one of those drinks that come with a little parasol (umbrella) and use that, if you can figure out how to make it stay on or if you have washi tape in your EDC (everyday carry).

author
Ranie-K made it!(author)2010-10-26

Here's my diffuser -a rice paper lamp from IKEA:

149_0214.JPG
author
hovawart made it!(author)2016-03-03

Brilliant! I've seen smaller rice paper lamps in the Japanese dollar stores, like Daiso--I know smaller would be less effective, but in the interests of packability, I wonder if they'd be good enough.

author
npasulj made it!(author)2011-11-24

I like it ^^

author
kwyles made it!(author)2011-06-13

Cool sort of... but holy. That is a giant thing to have on your camera!

author
Ranie-K made it!(author)2011-06-18

It's collapsible.

author
reptedjess made it!(author)2011-01-11

NICE!

author
davidbarcomb made it!(author)2014-11-27

Great idea. I would not use it in public tho

author
maniacse made it!(author)2012-09-14

Nice idea, thanks for this!

author
ccardiaco made it!(author)2011-11-08

Funnily interesting. I like it. Can I use 'cigar box' instead.

author
tylercard made it!(author)2011-11-01

Very Creative.

author
vktr79 made it!(author)2011-08-08

Very interesting way to cover the flash, for some reason on Step 4, a packet is turned in the direction of the photographer. Incidentally a lot about photography, please visit http://knigipofoto.ru

author
LasVegas made it!(author)2006-12-08

Great Instructable! I'll have to change brands though. The shiny side of my Pall Malls wrapper is red. Now, if you could only solve the problem of the blurry pictures I get during my Smoker's Cough spells.

author
binnie made it!(author)2007-02-05

as if you smoke

little clue QUIT half my grandparents gone cuase of smoking * in the 70s and that it was big i guess lol wasnt bad for yo then

have lung( and like ) problems * and they quit while they were ahead * but today its a known thing its bad so i dont know why people still start ITS NOT COOL ITS DOWNRIGHT STUPID

author
tcsoka made it!(author)2010-09-02

yo learn english lol

author
CybergothiChe made it!(author)2010-09-03

Don't forget your capital letters, both at the start of a sentence and on proper nouns, like English.

author
Nelson_Yepez made it!(author)2011-07-09

Like

author
tcsoka made it!(author)2010-09-03

Clearly the first time you've witnessed the pedantic sarcasm of an Englishman.

author
Nelson_Yepez made it!(author)2011-07-09

HAHA

author
greezus made it!(author)2011-06-11

but it does make me look very cool AND sophisticated at the same time!

author
flipdoggyplayer made it!(author)2007-01-06

Ha, I put the reply under the wrong post. I meant to put "That could have an interesting effect" under this post in terms of the red paper. Then again, a hot bath also has interesting effects.

author
wantoniak made it!(author)2011-05-08

Fantastic idea! I made mine in 30 seconds, and most of that was finding the materials! Love it!

author
munish4u911ex made it!(author)2010-09-04

How can you get empty cigarette packets in first place if you quit smoking? ;-) :P

author
kyle.erwin made it!(author)2009-09-30

"if you don't smoke, I'm sure your friendly neighbourhood chain smoker will provide you with an empty." Ha! This is a great idea.

author
Sparktv+Productions made it!(author)2010-09-04

u read my mind exactly, my neighbor is a big smoker. :D

author
sug552 made it!(author)2010-09-03

Very Good.

author
guitarman63mm made it!(author)2010-04-23

You should have added a shot without using the flash at all.  I have a sneaking suspicion that you have incandescent lights, and that the second photo didn't really get much light, and it's just the available lighting.  I can't be sure, of course, without asking, but that's my assumption.

author
rllphoto made it!(author)2010-03-23

hahahaha! nice! great idea! and it´s work

author
asda653 made it!(author)2010-03-20

I hope you don't mind the necroposting, but -
This is a great instructable, I adapted it to my film fisheye cam - the original flash was obscured by its honking huge lens. Basically the same as the guy down there did. I used the shiny side of aluminum foil instead of the carton foil for a brighter flash transfer but have yet to see the results - hopefully I'll finish up my roll tonight and develop it tomorrow.

Testing the flash out looks decent - if I dont get the effect I'm looking for though (ie. if the flash simply ends up at an odd degree or too far from the view angle) I will probably make a ring diffuser. Fingers crossed though!

picture0002d.jpg
author
Reutan made it!(author)2009-11-11

Very nice.

And to the last picture: "Gentlemen?"

author
skylane made it!(author)2009-10-22

Whatever you use, you will be loosing some light on your subject.  Most built in flashes are pretty limited. Most about 10 feet or so.  For the closer shots, like 3 feet (1 meter) or less, a difusser is great to have.  You can use a tissue, handkerchief, T-shirt, thin cardboard... you are limited by your imagination.
I have put my finger over my flash to reduce and defuse the light on close up shots.  It puts a lot of red into the pic...
Since digital pics are soooooooo cheap.. just play with stuff and see what happens.  A cotton ball or "mini-pad" can work too...
Aside from gravity.. there are no rules....

author
glamourful made it!(author)2009-07-10

Brilliant. I only smoke when I drink and I only drink a few times a month so when I buy a pack of cigarettes or prime times they last a while. I happened to have a pack of prime times when i came across this. i played around with it to suit my camera. I shoot with a Nikon D60 and i found cutting the bottom of the prime times box just before the P is perfect. Took a few with and without shots, and i am very excited about this. Also I find since the inside of the box is white, it doesn't make a difference with or with out the foil.

author
oatmealfight made it!(author)2006-12-22

Where the heck do you get tri-lingual smokes?

author
Spaceman-Spliff made it!(author)2009-06-03

Switzerland, of course....

author
gizmodesbois made it!(author)2009-06-09

In Belgium too :) We have tri-lingual smokes :)

author
luvit made it!(author)2009-06-02

dispose cigarettes properly

author
emuman4evr made it!(author)2008-06-14

Couldn't I achieve the same effect by putting a piece of white paper in front of the flash?

author
guitarman63mm made it!(author)2009-05-27

Well, no. This bounces the harsh light from the flash off of foil/paper, whatever, and reflects it back. Putting a piece of paper in front of your flash will just block it, and nothing will happen at all. It's the same as when studios point halogen lights at diffusing screens, to get a more even, balanced light without any harsh shadows.

author
Longchamp made it!(author)2008-05-07

Id really like to see 3 pics. One with direct flash, one with the indirect, and then one with no flash at all. All with the same exposure time of course.

author
aimoto made it!(author)2008-12-13

I did that here if you're interested.

author
Longchamp made it!(author)2008-12-13

That is amazing. Thank you

About This Instructable

296,103views

261favorites

License:

More by monkeywithagun:Cigarette Packet Flash Diffuser
Add instructable to: