A "grid" is a great accessory to constrain the output of your speedlite into a nice tight pattern. This tutorial was initially released via the Strobist Blog last fall, and is a great way to use up those pesky political signs you find laying around all over the place after election day.
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Step 1: Step 1

Picture of Step 1
Measure the head of your speedlite and cut a strip of political sign to match the width of the speedlite. Mark plastic corrugated in 1" segments.

Step 2: Step 2

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With rotary cutter and ruler, cut 1 inch segments. Hold the ruler down very firmly, to avoid jagged or wavy cuts.

Step 3: Step 3

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Trim ends of corrugated plastic to match the contour of Speedlite top. I like to use embroidery scissors for this, but your spouse/so may not be so understanding!

Step 4: Step 4

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Cut black foam paper 2 inches by 8.5 inches. You can use any color of that foam craft "paper" but I chose black to match the speedlite.

Step 5: Step 5

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Wrap foam paper around grids and fasten with Gaffer's tape. You can get a partial roll of Gaffer's tape from your local school theatre some times, else your local camera shop will have it.

Step 6: Step 6

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Slide grid onto speedlite. The extra inch of foam paper will grip the end of your speedlite nicely.

Step 7: Enjoy!

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The light is now concentrated in a narrow pattern. The edges of the light pattern seem to fall off more nicely than with my Speed Snoot. Enjoy!
ops I'l late about three years with my posts ;-)
alloqba6 years ago
Hi, Nice idea at first sight, but notice, that Strobist uses black snoot for one purpose - to absorb light flashing in wrong direction. White plastic will not work as good. Maybe try to spray-paint it black inside? Anyway, nice idea.
I think that sprying it should make the surfaces a little matt, and you loose some light power.
Nice! I hadn't seen it, till it compared beside my grid snoot Instructable :-)
Corrugated plastic is easy to find in Italy, in any big toolshop, it's also black and coloured.
[Gadgeteer]5 years ago
Does anyone have any idea where to source this product in the UK. Thanks
Don't know about the UK, but in the US you can buy it in art supply stores. US$6 got me a sheet big enough for 8-10 grids, if I wanted to make that many.

I bought black for better light control.
dpertovt6 years ago
I wonder if you were able to use black spray paint lightly over the inside to lessen the diffusion. Unless that is what you are after... :-)
supdegrave6 years ago
This is a nice design. However, one benefit of using black straws is that there's less dispersion of light. Using white plastic allows the light to bounce and diffuse far more than what occurs with black.
Blackx6 years ago
Seems to be better than the drinking straws version. I have assembled the straws - and it took me a long time - and the doesn't seem to be nearly as robust as this version. Now I am wondering where to get an USA political sign here in the central Europe :)
CementTruck7 years ago
You could probably use a bunch of drinking straws cut to the same length instead of using the political sign.
Patrik7 years ago
Nice idea! A bit more diffuse than a snoot, but more compact and I'd guess you lose less light.
This is genius! I first saw the snoot Instructable, and was going to do that, but now I'm going to make this grid instead. I want to make some type of ringlight to fit around a lens for macro photos, if you have any ideas on that please share. Great Instructable
Geordiepom7 years ago
Hey hey! Federal election this weekend - I'm going scavenging first thing Monday. Thanks for a great instructable mate.
piperjon7 years ago
I agree on both parts, you have simple, ingenous ideas for manipulating light in photography. Having that control (and using it appropriately) is the difference between a snapshot jockey and a true, talented photographer. Fabulous! - Pj
leebryuk7 years ago
It's too bad you don't get more feedback. I appreciate the ideas. It's an excellent idea and I'll definitely copy it.