As a New York City videographer--or guerrilla filmaker--it's sometimes difficult to have the necessary lighting. As a solution, I built this compact, portable device.
This light is a great way to get a really unique, soft light that works great as both a fill (in daylight) and aesthetically-pleasing primary light in lower-light situations.
The design is a nice alternative to what's on the market, as it gives a more even spread of light than some of the shoemount spot lights available--especially for close-up situations. This particular design is for the Canon GL-1; with some ingenuity, however, the design can be modified to fit many existing video cameras. (Plus it makes a great handheld fill light for still photos.)
I've tried to make this as simple as possible for anyone to make one of these lights. I've tried not too get too technical (to scare off the less-technically-inclined) or too basic (to bore the techies). I've created a resource page and parts list at the end. The build time, with minimal tools, is around 3-4 hours.
Step 1: Tools and supplies.
Ruler or measuring tape
Saw (bandsaw preferred, but can be mitered by hand)
Drill press (preferred; drill okay as alternative)
Drill bits (size based on specifics of components you buy)
Soldering iron how to
6-32 Tap (can be substituted with self-tapping screws)
Four Luxeon K-2 LED's
Two 2-AA battery holders
Four AA batteries
Two 5-inch aluminum picture frame kits (Note: only 2 rails come in each kit)
Four 1 and 1/8th-inch makeup pots if you get 5 you'll have a carrying case for extra screens and diffusions.
Four 1/4-inch 8-32 barrel nuts
1" wire screens to be used if needed to cut down light in the diffusers
4 6-32 U style clips
4 6-32 x3/8 screws
Red and black 22-gauge wire
JB Weld (I used the fast set JB-kwik)
Solder & flux
Doublestick foam tape
Heat shrink or electrical tape
Beleza Pura Cachaca
Lipton onion soup mix
For the record, by no means am I an expert when it comes to electronics. I know just enough to get by. With that in mind, please use caution when using my recommendations on wiring, resistors, heat sinking, etc. I am also open to advice, feedback or criticism (constructive or destructive).
However, when it comes to the booze, trust me.