When I started blogging I really had no idea what in the heck I was doing. I basically broke every rule of blogging because I didn’t know how to blog, take pictures, market myself, etc…. The only real thing I had going for me is that I knew how to cook good food.
I totally had/and still do have blog crushes on a handful of blogs that in my opinion take some awesome pictures. Even though I was totally embarrassed by the way my food photos were turning out I kept on cooking and blogging and was just crossing my fingers that someone out there would see the beauty in my food, even if my pictures sucked.
Then…. I came across a blog post over at Sewing Barefoot on “How to build your own Lightbox” and it clicked. I needed a lightbox! And I couldn’t wait to build one!
Here’s a short quick tutorial on how I built my first lightbox, along with some food photo’s to show you how my photo’s turned out before the lightbox and how much better they are after building my lightbox! Hope it helps you in your food blogging adventures
Oh, and I used this lightbox for about 6 months until my 19 month old crawled up on the the table and crashed through it because it was cardboard. I’ll be posting another Light Box tutorial very soon on how to make one a little sturdier and a whole lot bigger for when you get comfortable photographing with your light box! Sign up for our emails on the side bar —–> to receive our posts by email to make sure you don’t miss when share it on our blog! It’s awesome and my pictures are WAY Better now!
Step 1: Find a box that’s on the larger side and cut out both sides and the top, leaving about a 1 inch strip where you can attach your paper.
Step 2: Spray paint the interior of your lightbox with white paint so that your lightbox reflects the light evenly.
Step 3: Attach 2 pieces of tracing paper (we bought ours at Michaels) per open side and tape to the box. I left my top open because I like to take pictures looking down at the food.
Step 4: You’ll need at least 2 spotlights to shine through the sides of your lightbox. We picked our up at The Home Depot for right about $13 a piece.
Step 5: You’ll need some good lighting. We used these EcoSmart Daylight bulbs that we also picked up at The Home Depot.
Sometimes I stack books on either side under the lights depending on how the shadows look. You’ll have to play with it and see how you want your shadows in your photos and decide how high/low your lighting should be.
Here is an example of an avocado that I photographed in different light in our house:
Here are some of our food photo’s WITHOUT a Lightbox:
I feel like these photos are either too dark, too grey because it was a cloudy day outside or just too bright because the sun was shining right through the window. Without fail… I couldn’t get the lighting in our house right. It was so frustrating.
Here are some of our food photo’s where we used our Small Beginner Lightbox:
We started noticing that once we switched over to taking pictures in a lightbox we started getting our pictures featured on a number of blogs! You can check out our “Where We’ve been Featured Page” to see what blogs have taken notice of our new photos.
Hope this post helps if you are a beginner blogger! It can be overwhelming sometimes to know what to do next… and in my opinion lighting is super important. For a period of time I actually took pictures with my phone because my camera wasn’t working and my pictures still turned out great… all because of our lightbox!
We’ll be posting our Advanced Lightbox Tutorial soon on on our blog! Make sure to sign up for our emails so that you don’t miss our post!