Photography enthusiast Maciej Pietuszynski jumped into tilt-shift photography recently by building a do-it-yourself tilt-shift lens out of an old 50mm f/1.8 prime lens, a shower head, and a rubber glove. The process isn’t for the faint of heart — it involves disassembling the lens. You can see some of the resulting photographs in this Flickr set.
Shower head, rubber glove, 50mm…tilted!!! (via DYIP via MAKE)
Heavier tripods are generally more stable than lighter ones — wind doesn’t affect them as much — but hauling them around can be a pain. Instructables user Andrew Axley came up with the brilliant idea of making his simple tripod more stable by adding his own weight hook. The tripod is light when not in use and when you need extra stability you simply hang your camera bag onto the hook. All you need to do is figure out a way to attach a hook securely at the center — Axley chose to drill a hole through the side of the center column and attach an S-hook using a bolt and nut.
Tripod stabilizer weight hook (via Lifehacker)
Steve 21 has an interesting trick for finding good available light: he places a marble in his hand to simulate what the light would look like on a human face:
Just hold a fist in front of you (like holding a telescope), tuck the marble just under your forefinger, and there you have it – the same lighting an eye would get.
And since you know you want the catchlights to be up at 1 to 2 o’clock, or up high at 12 o’clock, simply turn about until you see the catchlights you want.
The neat thing is that the curves and wrinkles of your hand show you the amount of contrast and backlight.
Black marbles: the latest must-have item in any beginning photographer’s camera bag.
A Trick to Finding Good Available Light [photo.net]
Image credits: Photographs by Steve 21
A Swedish hacker and robotics student named Björn Mabrö is claiming that he has successfully developed a custom firmware for the Canon 5D Mark II that adds Apple’s Siri voice assistant to the DSLR. Mabrö claims that the hack allows the camera to respond to 124 different voice commands that control everything from the shutter to changing values in settings.
After damaging the pellicle mirror in his Sony A55 with cleaning fluid, a guy named Dario decided to look for a makeshift replacement while waiting for a real replacement mirror to arrive. He then discovered that food wrap (AKA Saran wrap) works nearly as well as a real pellicle mirror. The only downsides are occasionally degraded autofocus and a soft-focus effect when facing bright lights.
Image credits: Photographs by Dario/sonyalpharumors
Nikon’s firmware got decrypted last month, and now an unofficial firmware for Nikon DSLRs has emerged. Rather than offer useful adjustments, the firmware is purely for geekiness: it gives Nikon D5100 DSLRs a Star Wars theme.
Love music just as much as you love photography? Want an extra music stand? You can make a makeshift one by combining your tripod with a music stand! The IKEA BRÄDA stand is perfect for this, and only costs $2.50. Peter Janssens of grow for it make his stand connect to the tripod using a bolt and the mount on an old camera.
Brada music stand (via IKEA Hackers via Lifehacker)
Image credit: Photograph by Peter Janssens
Reading a camera’s user manual is a great way to become familiar with all of its features and functions, but what if you don’t have the patience to sit down and chew through it? Here’s a strange but useful trick for making sure you read the manual thoroughly: put it in the bathroom. By placing it in a place where you’re desperate for things to read, you’ll slowly work your way through it and understand your camera more without having to take a chunk out of your busy day!
(via Reddit via Lifehacker)
Image credit: Magazines by theseanster93
Beauty dishes are pricey, and so are dedicated cases for carrying them around. If you want a cheap and simple way to protect your dish, LA-based photographer Mariusz Jeglinski suggests buying a Christmas wreath bag for less than $10. The shape works nicely for dishes, and you can add some extra padding to the case if you want added protection.
Image credits: Photographs by Mariusz Jeglinski/Strobist and M. Nguyen
Wanting a cheap and compact way to carry, protect, and manage his SD cards, Instructables member FrankenPaper discovered that the plastic cases that come with Sunstar GUM Soft-Picks are the perfect size for holding 2 cards. To keep the cards from jostling around and to track whether they’re full or empty, he created an insert that you can print, cut, and fold yourself (download the PDF here).
SD card case [Instructables]