How to Make a High Fashion Specular Reflector - $15 and about 15 minutes.
Step 1: What you’ll need
I’ve got a fun little DIY light modifier for you today. I call it the High Fashion Specular Reflector or “shiny board” for short. In my travels, I have to carry a LOT of gear. Especially when the trip is on my own dime and I don’t have a budget to rent the cool toys I want to have. I came up with the idea for this reflector through experimentation and just obnoxious luck. I wanted to create a very hard light (in addition to the sun) to use on my model while on location. That’s not too hard to accomplish with strobes, but remember, I get lazy. I first started messing around with mirrors, but they didn’t really do what I wanted, not to mention they are heavy and dangerous if broken. Then I thought about Mylar! Well now rolls of Mylar aren’t super hard to find, but also aren’t readily available in a lot of locations. There is however a cheap and readily available solution, and that is a camping emergency blanket! So combining the Mylar blanket with a couple of other items I was able to create a remarkable source of light, that is cheap, and versatile. Here is how.
What you’ll need :
- 24×36″ Poster Frame ($10) These come in all sizes, but you need the ones with plexiglass fronts, easily found at any superstore
- Duct Tape ($1.50) Also found at the superstore. You know the saying, if you can’t Duck it…
- Scissors ($1.50- $400) Supersharp hair styling shears are preferred, but you can use a $1.50 pair too.
- Emergency Camping Blanket ($4) The key ingredient, found at pretty much any store that has a camping section.
First thing you want to do is take the poster apart and separate its pieces.
Don’t throw anything away (except the shrink wrap that came on the frame).