improvised studio equipment


TPF Noob!
Mar 22, 2011
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So Cal (Anaheim)
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I know most of you have fancy studio equipment ( strobes, stands, tri pods, backdrops etc.) what do you guys use to improvise for some of your studio equipment?? I know I can use a black blanket hang it on the wall as a backdrop. Lets see some pic of what you got
No fancy studio equipment here... I have one umbrella and stand, everything else is DIY for now. Works well for where I am on the learning curve, eventually I will get better lighting/backdrops but no time soon.

Example Shot:

Web-1993 by PharmakonPhoto, on Flickr

and the setup was like this:

Web-2045 by PharmakonPhoto, on Flickr

So just for explanations sake, the "Reflector" was the sun shade from my car, "backdrop" is a white sheet clamped to some wood, which is hanging from a hook on the wall that usually holds a heavy mirror. the light overhead clamped to the chandelier is attached to a DIY beauty dish (tupperware bowls, hot glue, and plastic paint, bent up aluminum ruler for a mounting bracket) which for this shot was really just spreading out the light to light up the whole backdrop and keeping it from adding too much flare to the shot.
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I hope this thread gathers some good ideas!
I'd really like to see some lighting done cheaply.
Before I started to add to my equipment pile I had used fleece blankets, clamps from my wood shop, my halogen work lights in the garage (highly recommend not using those around kids), pot and pan lids as reflectors for macro shots, white butcher paper, pieces of wall paper, the silver sun shades for cars that go in the windshield as a reflector, and several other items I've forgotten about over time. The trick is to use them in a way that they become the background or lighting without being obvious. You are only limited by your imagination as to what you use.
good set up pharmakon. I also saw a youtube video where a guy uses clamp lamps w 100w bulb and some vellum for his set up

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