Homemade lighting controls

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by Robert Kennedy, Jan 2, 2003.

  1. Robert Kennedy

    Robert Kennedy Member

    Sep 7, 2002
    Just north o
    Medium Format
    Alrighty. I got my Alien Bees 800. I got my 9' background hanger. I got a few rolls of paper.

    Now I need lighting control.

    I have the standard "reversible umbrella" which I do like. I've gotten some good results by bouncing off the silver side straight into the subject. Gives nice highlights on the eyes that I like. I've played with a few different things. Even used my SP 5-in-1 reflector.

    Now, I want to play with some other lighting controls.

    But I'm still paying off Christmas (1996 that is... [​IMG] ). So I'd like to see about making my own snoots and grids and things like that.

    Although I do have this somewhat reasonable fear of fire. It would really suck if I made my own snoot and burned down the house. Plus I think my girlfriend would probably be pretty mad.

    So I am loathe to just start putting thing in front of my light willy-nilly.

    So, any hints or safety tips on making my own controls? I'd like to start simple. Like a snoot.
  2. Cem

    Cem Member

    Nov 27, 2002
    Brooklyn, NY
    you can make it from black aluminum foil.
  3. BobF

    BobF Member

    Sep 7, 2002
    Pikes Peak
    Robert - If you are talking alien bees it is only the modeling light that puts out heat, right?

    As Cem says aluminium foil, but the black is expensive, or various cans and kitchen utensils. I have cut both ends out of a can for a snoot on a Vivitar 283 hair light, painted bunt pans and angel food cake pans for snoots etc on Spedotrons. Found some black 1/2" light grid that isn't perfect but works fairly well as a gid light when fitted into the angel food cake pan.

    Look around and you can find all kinds of things that might work and don't cost 50-100 bucks. Not sure how paying clients would feel about my kitchen utensil lamps but they do work.
  4. bmac

    bmac Member

    Sep 30, 2002
    San Jose, CA
    Black foil is the way to go. The modeling light puts out constant heat, but the strobe bulb itself puts out a ton more when it fires off. As stated above black foil is pretty expensive, and the Alien Bee's accessories aren't that much more. If it were me, I'd bite the bullet and just buy the AB snoot.