A few years ago I was introduced to a ring light thanks to Jeff Janowski. He's a wonderfully talented photographer and friend of ours (and I love his wife Vicky so much.)
A ring light does wonders for your face. It helps you pop and a lot of portrait photographers like it.
If you're going to buy a ring light, they can be very expensive. Even the "diva ring light" online is $200. Gurl, I ain't got $200 for a light right now!
So, I scoured the internet for DIYs and I found one that I really liked -- one that was cheap, simple and effective.
The pictures below were just quick pics I took with my phone (a Samsung S6) -- but I think they're pretty good for being phone pics!
Anyway, on to the lights. If you want to bypass everything I write and watch the video that inspired me, check out Ashlynn B's YouTube channel.
I slightly diverted from her tutorial. Here's what I used (with Amazon links) -
- 14" wide floral craft ring (wreath) ($7)
- 14" wood hoop for embroidery ($7)
- gorilla glue (had it in the house)
- white spray paint (had it in the house)
- 12v DC adapter ($9)
- LED light strips (cool white) ($10)
(***Ashlynn also uses a hot shoe and wood cube but I haven't done that part yet. I may... or I may not.***)
I also put this together bit-by-bit over the course of several days because it's easiest with my work schedule. In reality, you could finish it as soon as the glue or paint dries.
1. Glue the hoop to the craft ring.
2. Spray paint the hoop/ring. You could use a reflective silver or gold... but I used a white appliance color leftover from a previous project.
3. Add the LED lights. In the YouTube video mentioned above, Ashlynn B lines the inside of her hoop twice. For whatever reason, I did not have the space to do that. So, I did two strips of lights on the outside, one on the inside.
It is really as simple as that. I am thinking of a way to either build a PVC pipe tripod for the light or I am going to try the hot shoe idea in the video mentioned above. I'm not sure yet because I need to find a wood cube and I also have never really farted around with a drill, though I'm sure it's easy. However, it's also easy to use your hands to hold up the light, too.
I think this is a good start to creating a pretty inexpensive light -- I do not claim to be a professional but I do really like the difference it created in my pictures.