Friday, March 23, 2012

DIY Photo Studio Light Box Tutorial

If you've ever seen those awesome Etsy photos of items just floating on a bed of white and wondered how the F did they do that? Your mouth agape in amazement. Well I'm here to show you how to go from alright to magnificent ^_^ Take for instance this photo at right of my sons first pair of Chucks. That's Chuck Taylors or Converse for those who don't know. This picture isn't terrible, for an iPhone photo anyhow ( I REALLY NEED A CAMERA). But when you place them into a photo light box thingamajig then, presto change-o:
they are suddenly one of the cutest pair of shoes you've ever seen. 

So let's start shall we :) First let's gather our supplies**:

  • One sturdy box larger than 12x12x12 if possible (Free if you've got one laying around)
  • Tape of some sort, preferably packing tape or duct tape (Also free if you can find it)
  • Tissue paper x 3 depending on how big of a box you've got (you guessed it, free)
  • An exacto knife, box cutter. I will not be held accountable for your dangerous stunts. Go buy a quality cutter!!! (Mine was probably $12 but I had a gift card = Free)
  • White posterboard and any other colors you'd like, though you should stick to black or white at first. NO crazy patterns. (This was a splurge. $0.30 a piece and I got two *cringe*)
  • And a cute little something you've got laying around (FREE)
  • Oh and you should also use: a ruler, and marker, or pen or pencil. 

Here we go. Not all steps are pictured, my apologies.
Also, prior to beginning, turn off all fans in your general area so as not to disturb the tissue paper. Close the windows.  And make sure your child is down for a nap or happily occupied in a pack-n-play or something. Exacto knives are no joke!!

Step 1.  Figure out which part of the box you'd like to have as the bottom. Some people would like to leave on the top flaps so as to let in or keep out some light. Me I cut those suckers off the first box I made. Anyhow...

Step 2.  Use your ruler and marker to measure in approximately 1.5" or 2" on all sides of the top and sides of the box. Then cut out these rectangles. It should look like this:

Step 3. Tissue paper time! Cut three pieces to fit these windows you've just cut out. And tape them ever so carefully. Not like I did, do a better job than that!

Step 4. Create a thin opening on the far end of the top side of the box for your posterboard to go down. And if you're crazy anal about raw edges then you'll tape up the cuts so the posterboard will go in easier.  

Step 5. Cut the posterboard to fit and slide it in!

And then, Step 6. Place your cute little something inside and take a couple pics. 

There's an ugly shadow behind him when it should be below him, BUT I didn't have any lights on AND the sun was behind me so... If you want to maximize the awesomeness that comes with this then you should use lights on either side and on top and you can filter it how you see fit ^_^

Here's the finished product pic:

What do you think? I could have gone to a site like and whitewashed the background but this is how it looks now. Unedited. 

That's all folks, and it cost me a whopping $0.60 + tax. Ouch. Don't tell DH!! So, questions? Comments? Concerns?


  1. Thx for sharing Bri. Your instructions seem very easy to follow. I cant wait to make my own and share some new photos with you guys.

  2. Thank you so much Bri. I fill up my square with paintings but often wondered how to do this when I sell something else on ebay.

  3. Oh, it look great! Such a great idea and way to use stuff you have on hand...and such an easy to follow tutorial!

    Thanks so much for sharing.

  4. great tutorial ... thanks for sharing :)

  5. Pretty good post. I just came across your site and wanted to say that I have truly loved reading through your blog posts. Thanks! Look for additional posts on this topic soon.
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