Priceless Photos with DIY Tips

You don’t need expensive equipment…

I have forgotten many things over the years that are helpful for making great photos, so why not make a few handy notes for a photoshoot. I’ve even had a class on “how to shoot in sh@tty light”, there’s even a book.

I’ve been on set of a multi-million dollar TV show with so much equipment, and one used a scrap foam board to add fill to the actors… That gives our first tip, use what you have laying around.

Reflectors:
Use what you already have. Have the model face a light colored wall, using it as a reflector, while you shoot with your back towards the wall. Take the time to look around for a better solution.
Foam core project boards are handy.
Have someone with a white shirt stand near the model to reflect light.

Scrims:
Use sheets.
Actually use the scrim in your 5-in-1 reflector.
Nets, Lace, sheer cloths, shade trees, awnings

Fashion:
Thrift stores, consignment stores, vintage are great resources; look for dresses, prom dresses, suits, props, anything usable.
Return items store, I’ve got a store called “Gimmea5” that sales returned items that were bought in bulk and sold to the public. These are the same items that later get resold on Ebay or yard sales.
Up-cycle/Re-purpose clothes: Make something new or unique out of existing clothes. Make a cute crop top from an old pair of leggings, it’s a simple cut.

Learn emergency tricks: When a chain or string strap clasp breaks, make it a halter with the one that works. Use safety pins to repair lots of things too.

Lights:
If it produces light, use it: flashlights, shop lights, fairy lights, Christmas lights, those vintage looking LED bulbs you keep seeing, a TV, glow sticks.
Light painting with long exposure photos, you can paint with a many types of light sources.
Properly build a light fixture, if you know what you are doing safely.

Mood Boards:
I still need a Pinterest account, but not every photo on the internet is up for that use.
An actual board: cork board, dry erase board, plywood
You can make notes on just about anything: Journals, composition books, napkins, phones, tablets, stone tablets, clay tablets
Take pictures and screen shots to remember things later.

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