Softbox setup and getting some cool studio type shots

Liked the shot!!! Since sometime I was thinking about making some setup for myself to click some studio type shots. It looks fantastic when we see those crisp shots in white or black backgrounds in infinite mode and the product seated in between. Frankly, but just looking at those shots we don’t come to know what it takes to get those outcomes. I am not a professional and hence has limited knowledge which I gained from reading online and experimenting. So here are the things which i would plan to showcase:

1. Setup of creating a cheap soft box.
2. Using the soft box.
3. What other options I have seen.

Creating a soft box setup:
Now frankly I am very cost conscious fellow. Until and unless I see a reason or a measurable outcome, I don’t like to spend money especially on photography stuff. Rather i would buy some stocks :). May be that’s the sole reason I haven't got my hands on a DSLR yet.

Here are the items you would need to get started:
1. Carton box- After the Friday office, I went to the kiryana store round the corner and asked him the typical carton boxes which are lying with them in plenty. Asked him if he expected something for it but costed nothing since our regular groceries come from there only. Cost=0 Rs.
2. Scissors, Paper Cutter, Selo Tape - Available at home, so Cost=0 Rs.
3. Trace paper or Butter paper Sheets-2 Sheets from the stationary store @ 4Rs each. Cost=8 Rs.
4. White Chart-1 sheet @7 Rs each. Cost=7 Rs.

So, all set with the initial items to begin with at the cost of 15 Rs. Pretty cheap rite.
Here is how the carton looks like:

Listing some steps which followed next:

1. I removed the top closing ends.
2. Now to the other three sides, Side 1, Side 2, and top side 3, I started cutting huge windows out to leave frames from the sides. I have depicted them with white line in the below diagram. That’s what you need to remove.
3. After you carefully remove those out, the box would now look like a frame ready with you for your studio setup.
4. The empty frames now need to be covered with butter paper so that you can diffuse soft light through that to your subject.
Remember, the three sides, side 1, side 2 and top side 3 are the ones which would have the butter paper stuck to. This is how it would look like after sticking the butter paper.

6. Voila we are almost done…I cut the white paper sheet per the size of box and covered back side 4 with it and also spread it across the Bottom side 5 to give us a nice clear white background. And this is how it would look now.
So, this is the point where the soft box studio setup is ready to be used for our purpose. Now towards our second step, Using the soft box.
I don't have any external flashes to fire from any direction, so i planned to use my night lamps shades from the bedside for this purpose. Here are the items which i use for the next steps:
1, My tripod- You bet tripod is lot useful for things to hold other than the camera.
2, A lamp shade or simple bulb holder.
3, 100 Watts bulb. It suited my requirement. you can tweak that per your requirement.
4, Camera. My reliable Sony H50.
5, A subject to shoot. :)

I mounted the lamp shade using my tripod and now the light was coming from the top of the subject. Here is how it looks with the subject "Ganesha" enjoying all the limelight.

Here is a closer look at the setup.

And just to give you an idea of how the tripod was used and how the light was hanging around :)

And finally here is the outcome of the setup you just saw.

I was pretty happy with this cheap and fast setup. I think a flash would be much more helpful which is something i feel could be among other options. Of course, i used a small thermocol piece (lying useless in the TV carton) to reflect light in some shots even better.
I hope you find this tutorial useful and please do leave your comments If there are any more options by which things can be improved.


  1. Lovely setup and really cost effective. Thanks a lot for sharing the secret ;-).

  2. Amazing idea Saurabh. Thank you for sharing.

  3. got it finally how it was done... :)

    quite innovative and cost effective idea... now got your idea of product shoot...

  4. Superb piece of work here :) Thanks for sharing this with us

  5. wonderful job! really looking forward to try this

  6. Good job and thanks for sharing :)

  7. Nice work and thanks for sharing :)

  8. Very impressive ..

    thanks for the detailed setup.


  9. Very well done,

    Thanks for the detailed setup info


  10. Dr Raza6:06 PM

    Well Done. Necessity is the mother of invention.

  11. FInally made one. this is not similar to the one made by you,its a different design.but works just fine. please have a look.

  12. That was really good and useful.


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