Introduction: How to Make a Lightbox

In this instructable I will show you how to make a magic lightbox for Christmas. You can give it as a present for your family and friends, or just make it for yourself!

This lightbox will create the illusion that there's a picture made up of different steps of a stair. To see the illusion in action, click on the video link below.


Step 1: The Things You Need

First off all I would like to say this instructable would not be possible without these people:

Drips - For the design of the cardboard

Kandoken- For the wonderful artwork of Santa Claus

Kevin Macleod - For the music in the video

So moving on,the things we need:

A cardboard measuring 62cm X 45cm
Double sided tape
Pencil/ marker
Pen Knife
Long Ruler
A3 Printed Artwork
Styrofoam board 30cm X 30cm

Step 2: Building the Base

You may find that my first part of this instructable is similar or Drips cause I used his design.

As for my base, I build it using a Styrofoam board cut into 2 block of 15cm by 15 cm. next I grove a hole on the Styrofoam for the bulb to sit onto.

I use a 200V lightbulb and connect it to a power source. You can experiment with different colored LED light or even use christmas light for this. Make sure the base is high enough so light don't escape through the bottom. Try sticking 2 blocks of Styrofoam together with double sided tape.

Give a general description of the Step

Step 3: Adding the Artwork to Cardboard

This is where I introduce an added element to my lightbox. I used an artwork and make it as a wallpaper for the box. Cut the outline of your artwork and make sure its pasted around the center of the back of the board. You can choose to paste it after you have marked the grid of the cardboard or after.

Next, I followed Drips design of the lightbox which looks like a staircase. I followed every measurement and cut accordingly using a pen knife. Please take note that you should paste the artwork before you cut according to the grid so you don't have to cut it 2 times and it will look neat.

Step 4: Folding and Putting Everything Together

This must be the hardest part. I will not explain in detail how this is done because the video tells everything.

Before you fold, make sure you have a platform or a table top. Use the edge to guide you with the folding. This must be perfect, you don't want your light box to look like crap. Fold the major sides first, then you can start folding the parts that make up the staircase design.

This is a little tricky, the dotted line are suppose to be folded, not cut. You have to work your way and see which of the dotted line should be folded inward or outwards. I strongly suggest you try making the lightbox using paper first, so you know which part must be folded which way.

Use double sided tape to put the base and the box together. Before pasting, make sure your bulb is already inside and tested. You can't separate the base and box after pasting it together.

Step 5: Turn on the Magic!

Give a general description of the StepNow everything is done! You just need to turn on the light to see the illusion. Make sure its in a dark area and the only light source around. If you're lucky, you can see the glow in the colors of the artwork.

Play around with the intensity of the light to get the ideal loo of the lightbox, you can also make the whole box light up but the stair won't be that distinct then.