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How To Make A Lightbox

How to Make a Light Box
Light boxes are display cases to create memorable photographs of inventory that potential buyers will browse through when shopping on   They showcase photography skills and products perfectly as they eliminate glare, shadows, and the need for a flash. Fortunately, light boxes are fairly easy and inexpensive to craft – and the payoffs for your shop and photos are huge!

Step 1:  Select the Proper Size Box
A cardboard box is the material of choice for creating light boxes, as they are flexible enough to cut, readily available, and come in a variety of sizes.  Select a size appropriate for the item that will be photographed.  For jewelry, or a small hat and mittens, a 12 inch box will suffice.  Select a larger box for larger items.

Step 2:   Close One End and Open the Other
Flip the box on its side, and secure the rear with duct tape to ensure it stays closed.  The front of the box will need to be completely opened.  Using box cutters, remove the side and bottom flaps from the front of the box, while leaving a 12 inch piece across the top intact.  This will help stabilize the box.

Step 3: Measure and Cut the Sides and Top
On the two sides and top of the box, measure and draw a 1 inch border all the way around the edges.  Using a straight edge, cut along the marked border so that the sides and top of the box are opened up exposing the inside of the box.  Your box should now have the top, sides, and front open with an inch border framing them.

Step 4:  Insert a Backdrop
Hang thin fabric or tissue paper over the openings on the top and sides and secure it with tape.  Cover the interior rear wall of the light box with a backdrop of matte board or fabric.  Most items will photograph well against a white backdrop, but you may choose any color that aligns with your eye for photography.  Be sure that the backdrop is not creased in any way, as the background should appear fluid.  Secure the backdrop with tape on the outside of the box as well.

Step 5:  Install Lighting
Desk lamps are ideal photography props for light boxes as they are small enough to manipulate and provide plenty of light for the entire box.   While one lamp may suffice for a smaller box, larger boxes may require two or three lamps.  Of utmost importance when it comes to lighting is the type of bulb.  Fluorescent bulbs will give photos a yellowish hue, so use daylight bulbs instead.  Position the lamp directly above the box so the light is shining down onto the object.

Once the light box has been created and set up, it is time to put your photography skills to work.  The lamps can be moved and manipulated to provide the best lighting for the photographs, and to eliminate shadows.  Your online inventory will look outstanding to buyers shopping on, and your photography abilities will shine through as well.