7 Cheap and Easy Photography Hacks You Can Do Right Now

Created by photography magazine COOPH, this handy little video follows photographer Leo Rosas showing off 7 little photography hacks to help create more unique images with minimal investment, in either time or money.

We’ve featured some of these hacks on this blog before (e.g. colored marker filters), but this video does a great job at boiling them down to their most simple instructions, allowing you to digest as many of the hacks as possible for future use.

Press play, grab a Post-It note and get these written down for future use.

  • Dani Riot

    stop giving away all the secrets!!!! ;)

  • Bearr

    Ok, so I’m being thick, but what does #5 do, exactly?

    This was a fun video. I experimented with shaped bokeh a while ago, must give it another go.

  • Jeremiah True

    ND filter lets you shoot longer exposures without having to use a smaller aperture.

  • agiyo

    I’ve used butter instead of Vaseline for that blur
    effect. Cleans off the filter a lot easier.

  • Rob Elliott

    Basically it allows less light to the sensor/film so you have to shoot at a longer shutter speed.

    So if you want to shoot at 1/100 of second and you but a 2 stop filter on you can shoot at 1/25 and get the same exposure with more motion blur. At 10 stops I think it’s 5 seconds

    It is used in landscape photography for smoothing water and clouds

  • Bearr

    Ah cool, thank you!

  • Bearr

    Brilliant, thank you very much! That sounds like something I should try. :)

  • Jeremiah True

    The cost difference from this method to the legit filters is huge. I have a 77mm B+W 3.0 (10 stop) filter that is very strong but it cost me around $150, the welder’s glass will cost you less than $10.

    After seeing this, I might grab a piece myself since I get vignetting from the filter threads on my 10-22 lens. The glass would be flat and not have this issue.

  • Jason Yuen

    You can get creative with the filter cutouts. I went to an art shop and bought $2 hole punches and created bokeh filters. Here is one of the images I took. It was a cold Canadian winter 3am night when I took this photo a couple months ago. I used a maple leaf hole punch to get this shape. The hole doesn’t need to be big. The diameter of the hole was probably only around 1cm wide.

  • M. Lester

    Can’t wait to try out #3 The Vaseline Hack. Thanks for the share.

  • Mark Trevino

    Very cool thinking Jason

  • bigley ling

    I especially like the string tripod hack. I could see myself using that one

  • Ed Rhodes

    Also lets you shoot the sun without frying your sensor. I used welding glass to photograph the transit of venus a couple of years ago.

  • Philipp Birmes

    nice input..


  • Edgar Allan Bro

    yeah, you wouldn’t want people finding out how to steal your trademark ugly bokeys or 1980s glamour look.

  • Bearr

    I did that too, even made a little holder so I could change the shape. I think I’ll give it another go, as I found it difficult to get the size just right.

  • Андре

    wau!! ^)

  • Addison Geary

    Instead of using messy Vaseline or butter try rubber cement. Similar results and rubs off easily when dry.

  • Mehmet Paul Bakai

    Or pva glue also rubs of easily, can be dyed diff colors easily. Cheap too.

  • Alistair Mackay

    I need to buy a Go Pro….

  • RegularGuy55

    Does anyone know what the ND filter equivalent is for the welding glass? Has anyone tried ‘doubling up’ using an ND filter AND a piece of welding glass?