Instructables

Photographic Light Box - IKEA lamp hack

Featured

Here's a very simple but effective Instructable.

Sunlight is one of the most powerful (and cheapest) light sources for macro photograpy. However, if the light is bright, shadows will mostly ruin the picture.

This Instructable will show you how to use an old translucent IKEA lamp as a light tent AND camera support at the same time (I can't remember if the lamp is a Bjorn, a Benny, a Frida or Agnetha). 

Similar ideas have been presented in the past by Light_Lab and focusfinder although this hack requires no skills whatsoever and it will allow you to use the light tent as a camera support (for low shutter speeds).
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: The setup.


Unscrew the fitting from the lamp and place it out in the sun on a thick sheet of white paper.
Use the hole on top to take pictures through and use the lamp as a camera support.
Now you can work hands free (and at low shutter speeds).

The next logical step for this Instructable would be to connect a large lampshade to a SLR type camera.

Step 2: Take pictures !

Picture of Take pictures !
CSC_0949.JPG
CSC_0960.JPG
CSC_0947.JPG

The light box has its limitations (due to the current size), but for photographing from the top it works very fine.
The lamp is large enough to be placed over a plate of food to take pictures (be careful with hot dishes as the steam might condense against your lens).

The setup works very fast as you can easily shift and rotate the entire setup to meet your requirements. You can even photograph large surfaces by just placing the setup on top of whatever you're photographing.
The pictures below were taken in only a few minutes.

Light_Lab3 years ago
Great idea and your instructions are much cleared than those from IKEA i{^_^}. I have also put a hole in the bottom of a large plastic bowl and done this trick (my camera lens wouldn't fit through a light bulb hole anyway).
Someone noticed my hacked bowl in the back of the van and asked me where I got the groovy light shade. i{^_^}.

bertus52x11 (author)  Light_Lab3 years ago
Nice to hear!
Ninzerbean3 years ago
Brilliant, thank you!
bertus52x11 (author)  Ninzerbean3 years ago
You're welcome?
No chop stick I'ble yet?
Because of China? Coming soon...
bertus52x11 (author)  Ninzerbean3 years ago
Yep.
Robot Lover4 years ago
This is Awesome. The first picture is the one I'm most intrested in since I have troubles taking good pictures of electronics. I can't wait to make this and try this out! 5/5
bertus52x11 (author)  Robot Lover4 years ago
Glad you like it.
Pro

Get More Out of Instructables

Already have an Account?

close

PDF Downloads
As a Pro member, you will gain access to download any Instructable in the PDF format. You also have the ability to customize your PDF download.

Upgrade to Pro today!