BTS: Making and Using a Massive 27-Bulb, 4′ Diameter Ring Light

Photographer Dani Diamond is the man behind one of the most impressive ring lights we’ve ever laid eyes on. With 27 bulbs and at four feet in diameter, this continuous-lighting setup doesn’t play around.

And after getting more questions about the light than he could possibly reply to one at a time, he decided to create the above video, explaining how he built it, why he built it, and why it’s his most treasured piece of lighting gear.


The idea to create this beast came from photographer Jay Russel. After Diamond saw Russel’s endeavors to create his own ring light, Diamond wanted to give it a shot, himself. So, with three priorities in mind: clean, cheap and big, Diamond started work on it. After $120 in supplies and two days worth of work, the ring light was finished.


Upon hearing about the project, Sunlite endorsed Diamond, sending him over 1,000(!) lightbulbs to experiment with. A bit more expensive than standard incandescent, these Sunlite bulbs are low wattage, but still give off a wonderfully-neutral glow, perfect for portraits.


In the words of Diamond, himself, as shared over on Fstoppers, “Over the years I have learned to take risks and chances like this, and have been greatly rewarded.”

Be sure to give the video a watch and check out some of the resulting images, below.





To keep up with Diamond and any future DIY endeavors of his, you can follow him over on his Facebook Page.

(via Fstoppers)

Image credits: Photographs by Dani Diamond and used with permission

  • Diane D.

    Impressive, but I’m not sure how I feel about the catchlights.

  • JordanCS13

    I enjoy the light on the model with a ring light, but I have always despised the catchlights, which make the subject look like a possessed zombie. It’s the reason I’ve never purchased or made a ring light (not do I plan to, except perhaps for macro).

  • Ridgecity

    Great for a diy weekend =)

  • Fullstop

    I always support the DIY spirit, but I wonder if there would be some kind of way to improve it to make all of the catch lights appear to be continuous instead of separate lights, kinda like a traditional ringflash tube?

  • jon

    Ugly catch light can ruin an otherwise lovely portrait. It might work with a more detached, cold style. Sci-fi, etc.

  • Earl Von Tapia

    The people look like they have alien eyes.

  • Octavio Ortega

    This is a bulk thing, the catchlights sucks, as school experiment is OK, I prefer invest in a good ringlight option.

  • Mako

    Not even close … I need to try to find the photos of an actually large one that we use to use … actors on a turn table … from head to toe to close-ups

  • disqus_yuG7c27UWh

    I love the bit where he says he’s a natural light photographer, i think he forgot he’s using artificial lights, nice idea though

  • AliNoorani

    I love the setup but the catch lights seem very weird and unpleasant to me.
    May be you can cut a circular strip of plexiglass and put it on the light to avoid the ‘dotted’ circle in the eyes

  • AliNoorani

    like I said above
    maybe cut a circular strip of plexiglass and mount it in front of the bulbs to avoid the ‘dotted’ circle in the eyes. I guess it would be better to position the bulbs slightly inside the large wooden circle so it’s easier to install the front diffuser.

  • MaxBangayvef

    Lila . although Matthew `s st0rry is shocking, last wednesday I bought a gorgeous Nissan GT-R: from having made $4749 this month and-also, 10-k this past munth . it’s definitly my favourite work I have ever done . I began this 8-months ago and immediately started making a cool more than $87… per-hr . go to this web-site

    ==============>> PAYA­TOM.COM


  • Matt King

    That could be fairly easily remedied if he shaped two white, opaque molds of some sort to diffuse them.

  • Vegard Fjalestad Pedersen

    Have you even seen his work?

  • JonSmeeth

    one would need to have the space for it, a giant ring light is always difficult to stow away. another DIY trick is to look for discarded tablefan cages and start modding from there :)