Making a Lightbox on a Budget


Product photos are very important, how else are you going to show your product off when people can’t touch it?  I don’t think mine have been particularly good so far so I decided to try out a D.I.Y. lightbox.

I’ve had a couple of links bookmarked for a while showing me how to go about it, here they are:

The tutorials are great but I don’t have all the equipment so I’m making do with what I do have.


Here’s a suitably large box – I have some large rag-dolls which I hope will fit in there!


Following one of the tutorials I cut my box like this.


Then because I don’t have any white card I draped an ironed (might need another iron!) white sheet in it to create my light bouncing background.

P1040575 P1040575 picmonkey




The first picture was taken using natural daylight, it looks ok, though a bit drained of colour.  The tutorials suggest using picmonkey to adjust the exposure of your photo, so I did just that and the second picture is the result – much better!  Though that sheet does definitely need another iron!

P1040576 P1040576 picmonkey



Here’s a picture of a sock toy I made for a workshop undergoing the same treatment.  Again this is with natural daylight.

Now I don’t always have good light in my house and I only have one daylight bulb lamp whereas the tutorial says to use two – I’m not going to be buying another one, so again I’m making do with what I have.

P1040585Ooo, like a mini studio!


P1040584 picmonkey

This is the result this time,  A bit more of a shadow behind but not bad!  Again the first picture is as it comes, the second has had the picmonkey treatment.


Next I tried putting the light in over the top.


P1040586 picmonkey

I don’t think it works as well, I don’t like the double shadow, but perhaps it’ll work better with different shapes?


I put the lamp in a bit closer.

P1040588 P1040588 picmonkey

The colour of the picture is different this time, I don’t like this so much it’s not as natural looking,

I found the whole thing very interesting to do.  I realise I have more to learn about lighting and perhaps using different camera settings too but I do feel like I’ve made a positive step towards getting better product pictures.

I hope this blog post will be helpful to you too!


7 thoughts on “Making a Lightbox on a Budget

  1. Thank you for this. Getting my photos right is an ongoing thing (and I’ve been selling online for a few years now!). It’s amazing how different the photos come out with the natural light/tweaked vs the lamp light in different positions. I think second picture (tweaked) of your darling doll is my favourite. I’m lucky enough to have a conservatory where I take my photos, but even then, with light all around, if it’s dull my background comes out blue – drives me mad! I’ve used pic monkey in the past, they’re very good, but I seem to gravitate towards ipiccy these days. Elaine x

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I find one of the most useful functions of PicMonkey to be the “neutral picker”, which can be found under the “Colors” section. If you click on the neutral picker button, then click on the area of your photo (in this case the background) which has a colour cast, it will correct it for you. Simples! The result is not always perfect, but try clicking on different areas of the background and tweaking the sliders afterwards until you’re happy.
    I use both iPiccy and PicMonkey, as although they have a lot of functions in common, each also has some unique effects and functions. iPiccy has more free filters and special effects, but PicMonkey has some really clever tech and is great for adding vectors and text (particularly since they allowed you to use your own fonts). I recommend checking out either PicMonkey’s blog or this link for some really useful photo editing tutorials:

    Liked by 1 person

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