Need to take some studio shots but don’t have a studio? No worries, COOPH (Cooperative Of Photography) has some sweet tips to help you make use of what you’ve already got on hand or can inexpensively and easily acquire to make photos that sneakily look like you weren’t DIY fabulous. Geared primarily toward still life/object photography, they’ve broken it down by size – what you can do at home for small, medium and large subjects.

There are three different types of light sources used throughout the video – desk lamps, window light, and reflectors. The desk lamps are shown bare, DIY gelled, and diffused.

For all sizes you need a consistent backdrop; read “not distracting,” or “solid.” For small things, you’ve got a lot of options. Shown in the video are a chair, a wall, and paper. COOPH’s recommended light source for small objects is the aforementioned desk lamp. They show two methods of modification for small subjects using a frame – affixing colored plastic to the frame creates a DIY gel and doing the same with baking/parchment paper creates a small diffusion panel.

For medium objects, they used a less expensive alternative to a seamless paper backdrop – a roll of paper from a stationary store. This one uses window light and a DIY reflector made by wrapping something large, sturdy, and flat in aluminum foil.

For large objects as shown below, the recommendation is a bit craftier. They use plastic bins and baking paper to make little softboxes and use two lamps for the larger stuff. For big things you’ll need a good, solid colored wall.


Watch the video below to see it all in action and check out a DIY pop-up flash diffuser as well. What are some of your favorite DIY tricks? Let’s hear them in the comments!