DIY Macro Studio / Light Tent / Light Box for Less than $5.00


Yeap, only $5.00. That’s assuming you have all the materials needed, like the box, the garbage bag, poster boards etc. I was looking for some cheap chinese made light tents on ebay but they still cost around $30 a set, so I said to myself, why not make one, and here’s what I came up.


List of Materials:

  1. Box -18 x 16 x 18. The size depends on what you’ll need it for and with what you have.
  2. Tracing paper or White Garbage bag. I didn’t have a tracing paper so I tried a Glad WHite Garbage bag. Diffuses great.
  3. Poster boards, I got a 5 pack assorted color from Walmart for $2.57 and a separate black poster board only .54 . This is the only thing that I bought for the project.
  4. Transparent or white packaging tape.


It’s pretty straight forward. I cut a piece on all four sides of the box to make a window using a sharp folding utility knife. I allotted a 1.5 inch space from the edges of the box to the center. After cutting, I split the white garbage bag on the two edges and wrap them around the three window opening of the my light box. And that’s it. An instant light box. Use the poster boards as backgrounds to your subject, depending on what you need. You can position your light on the windows depending on how you need to position the light.


This little light tent is perfect photographing little objects, if you sell on ebay, it’s perfect for product photography. Great for experimenting with Macro Photography. That’s why they call it Macro Studio. There are endless of possibilities with this simple but useful light box.

For the Coke Zero photos above. I placed the uncovered window portion of the box on top so that I can place the only light source over the top of the window opening. I used a black poster board for the background.
Lighting Info : Single Speedlight on open top at 1/32 power

This lightbox is a variation of David Hobby’s (AKA The Strobist) $10 Macro Studio. Thanks to David Hobby.

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