How to Make a DIY Pizza Box Ring Flash

I have always been enthralled ring flashes, but they are so expensive! I recently found a pizza box ring flash how to, but it didn’t go on my camera (it was meant as an off camera ring flash) so I made some changes. And here, for all to use, is my version of the pizza box ring flash.

Step 1

You will need a few things:

  1. Foil tape, masking tape, duct tape
  2. PVC pipe the size of your lens (my lens is are big. But if you make one for a smaller lens, like a 50mm, it’ll probably easier to find a PVC pipe piece)
  3. Pizza box
  4. 2 bowls, (1 smaller, but bigger than your PVC, a slightly larger one, so you can have the actual, ring.)
  5. Tissue paper
  6. Utility knife

Step 2

You will need to find the center of your pizza box.

Step 3

After finding the center, use your smaller bowl to make the ring that will be taped to your PVC piece.

Step 4

Draw the circle with the bigger bowl, and the circle with the PVC pipe.

Step 5

You will cut out all the circlues, but the one that matters most is the middle one that says “glue to PVC.” this is the one that will make the ring show up in your subjects eyes.

Step 6

Cover the entire inside of the box with the foil tape.

Step 7

Cut the hole for you PVC from the line you drew. Then draw around the PVC on the the back of the box. On mine I have the inside line and the outside line tha make it easier to know what I’m dealing with.

Step 8

Tape the inside ring to the PVC pipe. Then cut the tissue paper to size. I used one sheet, it usually does the trick.

Step 9

Tape down the tissue paper, and cut a hole to tape to the PVC pipe.

Step 10

Take your external flash and trace around it so you know how big your flash spot needs to be.

Step 11

Cut the hole out, and you have a finished Ring flash. In this particular model, you need Pocket Wizards to work the whole thing.

Final Product

This is how it looks on the front of my camera. Here are some sample photographs taken with the box:

Well there you have it. A pizza box ring flash made for…maybe 10 dollars, depending on how picky you are about your pizza.

About the author: Natalie Slater is a grad student at University of Tulsa studying for a MFA in Photography and Printmaking. She currently lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma and teaches Digital Darkroom at a nearby University. Visit her blog here.