I am looking around for a DIY project to work on over Christmas.

I have seen lots of suggestions at DIY Photography and a few at The Strobist.

(In particular, there are lots of light modifiers and different ways to mount lights - which is great, but I'm after more too).

I feel sure that this community can come up with some cracking ideas too, and I would love to hear about any projects you have successfully(!) executed to build your own photo gear.

If possibly, please include links, photos, instructions, etc. so that others (including me) can follow in your DIY footsteps!


I meant to flag this community wiki, but I can't see how to do it. Am I going mad? blind? Can someone else flag it? Thanks.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I'll wait for the wiki change, as I have one that DIY Photography doesn't link to on my site. They've already featured the other. \$\endgroup\$
    – Joanne C
    Nov 25, 2010 at 17:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ This guy made his own fully working manual film camera: retrothing.com/2010/03/homemade-slr-camera.html \$\endgroup\$
    – Matt Grum
    Nov 25, 2010 at 18:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ I haven't been able to find the community wiki checkbox either lately. \$\endgroup\$
    – Evan Krall
    Nov 26, 2010 at 3:38

5 Answers 5


I built a gel holder/mount for my nikon flash.

First, I went to my photo store and asked for the sample kit of gel for photo/flash. It sells for about 3$ and it has a hundreds of colors and neutral density papers (including CTO).

I used card board to build the mount. I simply slide it over the flash head and insert the gel into a small slot.

Here are examples :

Also, not related to photo, but more video: I build a steadycam to have more stable video when moving. Search in google for : diy steadicam


I did a DIY shooting table for doing seamless background product shooting. It's much larger than the store options and uses clear plexi for under-lighting as an option. Anyways, total cost was about $100 and took an afternoon to build.

  • \$\begingroup\$ (+1) Nice! Aren't you worried about scratches developing in the plexiglass, though? \$\endgroup\$
    – whuber
    Nov 26, 2010 at 17:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ @whuber It happens here and there, but usually I have it covered and most can be dealt with as needed. \$\endgroup\$
    – Joanne C
    Nov 26, 2010 at 23:30

Built remote shutter release for my Canon xti. Used the plug and cord form an old pair of headphones and hooked it up to an old toggle switch found in the back of a drawer. Took a few seconds of experimentation to figue out which which pair of wires switched the shutter. Five minutes is all it needed, including looking for a half remembered switch.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Fantastic. Thank you for answering. I don't suppose you have posted the instructions online anywhere? (Flickr forums might be a good place, or even include them in your answer here) \$\endgroup\$
    – AJ Finch
    Jan 18, 2011 at 11:11

I've built a clear body cover. It is a body cover, with the center cut out and replaced by a small uv protection filter.

It serves two purposes:

  1. Can be covered with foil with a small hole in it- safe way to make your camera a pinhole camera.

  2. You can play around with home-made lens. Ever wanted to take a picture with a magnifying glass? Use a clear body cover to keep the dirt out.

Example image using a clear body cover. Pinhole in aluminum foil.

alt text


A panoramic tripod head, used to make a particular lens/camera combination rotate around the lens' entrance pupil.

This is essential to be able to make seamless stitched panoramas that contain significant amounts of foreground.

It's quite easy to make and can be quite expensive to buy so I can recommend it for panorama shooters with a limited budget. There are several guides available from others who have made them

I made mine for just one particular lens so it's not able to slide and adjust to different focal lengths, but it works well and is easy to assemble.


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