Try these 5 Brilliant Photography Hacks will transform your creativity. These hacks can be used for photography hacks, newborn photography hacks and creative photography hacks -like using sandwich bags!
If you don’t have time to stay and read all of the hacks you can snag a PDF Printable HERE to read for later…or stay here and enjoy!
I love finding D.I.Y. projects that I can use instead of buying an already made piece of equipment. It’s always cheaper, and it’s a lot more fun to experiment yourself with these items! For example I’ll be showing you a photography lighting hack using a coffee filter…brilliant, right?
All of these photography hacks are really easy to achieve and each are under $15 to create!
1. DIY Camera Filters: When I first learned about camera filters, I was extremely excited! What a fun idea that you can create artistic effects with a filter you can clip onto your lens! Most filters I found on the market though were quite boring, so I decided to find some D.I.Y. filters perfect for those projects. Some of my favorite filters are created with items you can find around you own house, and they take minutes to put together! Two of my go-to D.I.Y. filters are using a plain ziplock bag rubber banded to your lens and the second is using a sheet of clear transparency with sharpie colored on top for a fun, colorful filter. Both of these add beautiful texture to your photos that are even more beautiful than what you can do in Photoshop!
MORE on the Sandwich Bag over your camera click –> HERE
2. Creating your Own Shapes for Bokeh: This is one of my favorite techniques to use at night, especially during the holidays. Making shapes in your bokeh is really easy to achieve and it creates the most beautiful effects! All you need for this is a black sheet of construction paper, a pair of scissors, an X-ACTO knife and a rubber band. First, trace your lens onto a piece of black construction paper.
Next, carefully cut out the shape you’d like to achieve into the middle of the circle. Once the shape is cut into the circle, cut out triangles around the circle to make it easier to rubber band onto your lens (your circle should look more like a sun now). Next, set your lens to the lowest aperture and manually focus until you see the shapes appear where the lights are in your picture. A great way to practice this technique is by focusing on a string of Christmas lights just so you can see a lot of fun shapes! This is such a creative photography hack that most wouldn’t even think of trying…have you tried any different shapes other than a heart?
More info on aperture: Master and Understand Aperture and F/Stop
A 5 Minute Crash Course to Learn your DSLR Camera
3. D.I.Y Product Backdrops: I love using backdrops for shooting products that I review or for shooting Youtube videos because it creates a nice, even background that eliminates distractions. When I started looking into purchasing vinyl backdrops though, I realized that they can be quite pricey! I decided to look into the more D.I.Y. route for my backdrops and I was excited to find some great options. Some of my favorite items to use as backdrops are clean bed sheets, pieces of wrapping paper, and sometimes a plain white wall works great! A couple months ago, I did a lifestyle shoot with my sister-in-law and her brand new baby girl. Since it was over 100 degrees outside, we decided to use a backdrop indoors. I attached a large, white sheet to two large tripods and viola, an instant, clean background!
4. Create your own reflectors: Using reflectors is one of the easiest ways to have even light on your subject and great stunning portraits. If you are in the market for a few reflectors, but aren’t ready to fork out the money to buy some yet, there are easy ways to create the same effects with much cheaper items.
The easiest items to use are colored poster board for a reflector. In my photography kit, I always have a white foam poster board that I can use to bounce off clean light onto my subjects. You can also use a black poster board for the opposite effect.
Another item that I love to use as a reflector is aluminum foil. Just grab a couple sheets of foil and tape them to any piece of cardboard you have. Now you can reflect any light back onto your subjects with ease!
5. Make your own light boxes and light diffusers: Light boxes and light diffusers are powerful tools to have as a photographer. These special lights are for creating even, beautiful studio lighting perfect for any portraits or product photography. If you don’t have somewhere to store these lights though, your house gets cluttered up really fast! A simple way to save money and space is to create your own light boxes and light diffusers using simple materials from around your house. My favorite way to diffuse artificial light is by using semi-transparent paper (like a coffee filter) and taping it around my built-in flash. This paper diffuses the light which helps soften shadows and provide a more natural color to the skin.
Need more than just your camera flash? That’s easy…just apply the same concepts to some lamps in your house. Place semi-transparent materials over your lamps and place those lamps where you need the light. You’ve instantly creating beautiful lighting indoors!
Are you looking for more creative lighting tricks? These DIY Lighting tricks will change your world!
Creative Photography Tools and Hacks
Shooting through a Sandwich Bag
Ultimate Guide to Prism Photography
Ring of Fire Photography technique using a copper pipe!
I hope you all have enjoyed these simple photography hacks today! What photography hacks do you have in your arsenal? Leave your ideas and hacks in the comments!
Hi, I’m Lauren and I’m the blogger behind DressingDallas.com, a lifestyle website that explores all of the things that make life a little sweeter. Dressing Dallas is about loving yourself, being creative and finding inspiration from the world around you. Here you’ll find daily articles on fashion, beauty, photography, home decor projects and yummy recipes as I share fun tidbits from my life here in Dallas Texas. On top of being a blogger, I am also a successful medical laboratory scientist, mother and amateur photographer.
thank you.well thought out and very practical.As a newbe to photography they all help.
Thanks for the tips
Thank you for the tips. Definitely gave me some things to try out. I’m a beginner.
Nice ideas, anything is possible
Darlene MacKenzie says
what model and size is your camera…looking to buy a new camera, looking for some advice.
pedro saraiva says
Nice ideas. I do have a concern though. Putting a coffee filter over the flash, does the flash get hot? Is there any concern of ruining the flash?
For a cheap reflector you can also use the sunscreens that you put in a car to keep it cool
– they come with an aluminum side that reflects light well
Martin Cornell says
First, I must say this is a really good DIY tip. Really admire your work.
I can’t believe these sample DIY could make a perfect and professional photo.
Anyway, If you can share me the DIY Photo Light Boxes will be the best.
This tips are cool but I wish there were example pictures of what the tips will produce.
I have always dreamt of being a photographer. Photography captured me way back when …. I was extremely fortunate to be given my canon. I have had it for over 5 years and done nothing with it except use the “auto” feature and, snap away. To be honest, reading the manual for me, is like trying to teach myself a foreign language. I would love to produce something that looks like a professional has done it.
Debbie, what a precious gift you’ve been given! I would love to have you join me in my online photography course where I teach you to get off of Auto Mode and shoot with full control in Manual mode! Email me for more information: email@example.com
Do you have any before and after pictures of using the coffee filter over the flash?
Thank you! That was very helpfull!
Robin M Bertuccelli says
super fun tips, I’ll have to try some of these.
I absolutely love photography. I’m afraid I’m just no good at it. I have had cameras since I was a kid and always took bad pictures. (Those 35mm ones. Even had a Polaroid once.) I got myself a Nikon D5300 about 2 years ago, thinking maybe I just needed a better camera. My photos are still not coming out great. Definitely better, but not as good as I want. I wanted to do a photography course, but someone told me, “Most professional photographers are just good at it. They didn’t go to school. You just have to have the talent, you can’t learn it.” So, my camera doesn’t get used much and when I do use it, it’s on auto. I did read some free online stuff about aperture and shutter speed and all that, but when I play around with those, I just end up getting black pictures or my camera says “subject is too dark.” Even when I’m outside on a bright sunny day. So, I’m obviously doing something wrong.
I’m still basically an amateur but have been shooting on Manual, Av and Tv mode (depending on what I’m shooting) for about a year and thought maybe I could simplify these three aspects of manual for you in total beginner terms.
Aperture is the F number: the lower it is, the more light you are letting in but you also have a more shallow depth of field meaning there is a smaller area in focus and your background will be blurry (F/2, etc). Higher F number and more of your photo will be in focus but your picture will be darker.
Shutter speed: self-explanatory, but a slower shutter speed (1/50, etc) will let in more light but give you more motion blur, where a faster shutter speed (1/1000, etc) will make a darker picture that captures motion quicker and clearer.
ISO: I think of this as the light helper. The lower you can get this number and have enough light the better, because anything over 600 and I start seeing that “grainy” look to my photos.
Hope that helps 🙂
Milli Stephania says
Great post, love the coffee filter idea!
Tabetha Carrasco says
I heard ince that using aluminum foil is too bright. So, to tone down the shine, rubbing an eraser and leaving the mark from the eraser helps.
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The sandwich bag is brilliant! I can’t wait to try it out this weekend. I’ve got so many ideas I want try it with.
I have been into photography for several years and never knew I could do my own DIY filters. Excited to try these hacks!
Love these tips!!!