Many digital cameras are battery-only, and can’t be directly connected to an outlet for an infinite source of power. That’s ordinarily not a problem, but can become an issue if you attempt to do things like time-lapse imagery, for which the camera needs to stay powered and perfectly stationary for extended periods of time. That was the problem faced by Instructables member txoof with his Olympus E520. Handy with electronics and woodworking, he decided to build his own AC/DC interface for the camera, crafting a wooden mold that acts as a wall-powered “battery”.
If you have the same problem and aren’t afraid of sockets and buzz saws, check out his tutorial for instructions on how to do this yourself.
DIYPhotography has a neat tutorial on how you can build a DIY Lensbaby lens with cheap parts. The ingredients list consists of a macro extension tube, some electric tape, a macro filter set, and a pipe clamp.
Buying an illuminated white background for high-key lighting (or to use as a giant softbox) can set you back hundreds of dollars. Fortunately, you can create something similar on the cheap using simple white bedsheets, some PVC pipes, and some lights. Assemble the PVC pipes into a square frame, stretch the bedsheet over the frame, and illuminate the bedsheet from behind. You’ll want to blow out the white area on the street for evenly white lighting. Check out the full build tutorial over on DIYPhotography.
Needing a portable light box, Instructables member HHarry came up with a ingenious collapsible design that has built-in lighting. He’s also written up a tutorial on how you can build one too, but be warned: the materials may cost you up to $80, and you’ll need a good amount of know-how. However, if you’re looking for a hefty weekend project and need a convenient way to light and photograph small objects on-the-go, this one’s for you.
Forget model airplanes… This Plamodel snap model kit is the one to buy if you’re a photo-enthusiast (or want to make your kid one). Created by Japanese design house superheadz, it uses simple snap-together parts that allow even the “not-so-mechanically inclined” to assemble their own 35mm camera. There’s 44 individual parts, and an instruction manual for building the camera is available online. You can check out some sample photos in this Flickr group pool, and buy one for $17 over on Amazon.
Mechanical engineer and Flickr user Some Guy (Art) was bored at his job where picture taking was explicitly disallowed, so he did what any rebellious photo-fanatic would do: build a makeshift camera out of trash! Bringing $5 worth of parts (e.g. dowels, bolts, super glue) from home, he successfully turned some machine core — which he calls “cardboard toilet paper tube on steroids” — into a 35mm pinhole camera. Read more…
Reflector mounts (the things that attach a reflector to your bike) are so cheap that bike shops often give them away for free. Add a standard tripod screw, some washers, and some wing nuts, and you’ll have a super cheap camera mount that you can attach to a bicycle (it’s also a way to attach a camera to some random pole if you need to). You can also find a text version of this tutorial over on Instructables.
I had some stuff lying around as well as saw some parts as I was out and thought this would be fun to make. I have around $20 invested in parts. On eBay I saw ring lights for anywhere around $40 on up, so this will save you money and it was fun to make. Read more…