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How do I make a softbox? Answered

I would like to have a softbox that doesn't just have a flash but has a continous light on.




8 years ago

take a cardboard box, cut off the flaps on the top. cover the hole where the flaps were with white fabric. open the back flaps now, and put in a desk lamp pointing at the fabric. turn it on, close the back, BOOM almost free soft box (totally portable!).


8 years ago

For my softbox, I built one of the usual "cardboard boxes with paper taped over holes in the sides" boxes, and aimed regular lamps at it.  I say regular, but actually the top and one side were covered by my SAD phototherapy lamp, which is very pure white and extremely bright.  You can use normal lamps, but I suggest

a) manual white balance
b) use only one type of lamp.

I tried using a cheap CFL with a bluish tint on one side, and an incandescent light on the other, but all the photos came out with a weird colour cast (as you'd expect).

You can use a variety of things, I had a nice setup with three canvasses taped in to half a box and a single sunlight bulb above for macro work.

if you have a white bathtub you might get away with a couple of clip up lights and some careful positioning.

Really the softbox just needs to be made of white material that diffuses light nicely, you can make one out of any fine pure white material or for that matter you can use a cream or other fair coloured material if you like its effect, though getting white and using lighting gels could work...

For the light I'd suggest sunlight bulbs, they're colour temperature adjusted to sunlight and have a fairly serious light output...

Hopefully that helps a bit, though if you have too much trouble those little light tents for a tenner that pop up when unzipped are decent if lights are used well with them.

just build any of the softboxes you like and substitute continuous light for flash.  If you're using digital then fluorescent works great because it's cool and you can adjust the color in post processing.  If you're using film you need color corrected lights.

Be careful if you are going to use lights that get hot so you don't burn you soft box down.

Instructables has a great selection of diy softboxes or you can google for more.

Good luck.