I just finished a photography class at the local community college and have been spending the last few weeks experimenting with the photography of my cards. My main problem seems to be lighting -- or lack thereof. I have been shooting pictures on the dining room table near the window with the light on or on the couch with the window and front door open and just could not seem to get it right. I have been eyeing some light tents and lighting but just haven't been able to pull the trigger. But I think I may have finally found the solution - I built my own light box.

I have seen that some people on the web have created their own light tents at home using wood and in some cases plastic tubing. I finally stumbled across some instructions that I thought I could follow at eyefetch.com. So after a quick trip to the hardware store and a few instructions from my better half on how to use the pipe cutter I was able to knock one out in less than 30 minutes.

Here is what you need:
2 - 10 ft lengths of PVC pipe
4 - 90 degree bend connectors
4 - 90 tee connectors
1 twin size white sheet
1 piece of poster board
hole punch
pvc cutter
3 sheet metal screws
2 50 watt desk lamps (I used two reflector lights from the tool section instead - $7 each)

Cut the first length of pipe into 4 individual 17" pieces, 4 individual 2" pieces, and one 20" piece. Cut the remaining pipe into one 20" piece and 2 individual 24" pieces. Assemble each 17" section to a 90 degree bend connector. Then insert a 2" piece of pipe and add a tee connector to the end. Repeat three more times until you have four legs.

Next, insert a 24" piece between the two tee connectors to form your front and back. Then insert the 20" pieces into the tee to form the two sides. (I hope that makes sense.) Finally punch three holes along the top of your poster board. Hold the poster board up to one of the 24" pieces and mark where to insert your screws. The posterboard will hang off the screws so don't screw them in all the way. That is pretty much it.

Cover the box with the sheet and place one lamp on each side and you are ready to photograph your cards. You can even use some 20w halogen lamps for fill lighting if need be. I will be back with some new pictures later.
Thanks for visiting -


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