Wednesday, 19 January 2011

And for my next trick.....

I'm not sure which was the trick - getting the large cardboard box I needed, or making the item. The days are long gone when I was running a community project for young people based around recycling; then all shops and supermarkets would store usable items of packaging for me until they could be collected, or skips were to be found full of goodies.
I need a lightbox for taking photos. As I am doing a wonderful impersonation of  Old Mother Hubbard these days, I had to make one myself with materials I already had to hand. But - no large cardboard box.
Off I go to the local shops - "come back at 12 noon tomorrow, and we might have one". Well, "12 noon" was attended dutifully three days in a row, no luck. I realised we were playing "Now you see it, Now you don't", as unless you are present at the grand emptying of said large cardboard boxes, they are flattened and palleted immediately, and sent off to the Great-Cardboard-Box -Place-In-The-Sky. On the fourth "12 noon" appointment however, one incredibly  nice, helpful young lady emptied one on to the shelves for me there and then, so I left the store clutching my prize. I had resorted to bartering for one of their corrugated display cases to no avail, so both parties were happy.
Then, armed with the equipment needed, I set to.
Real photographers, look away now......(and those who know what they are doing.....)

Measuring and cutting out the panels got a bit tricky after a while, as the box became slightly unstable, so a very sharp blade in the knife was essential  to avoid undue pressure.

I decided to line it with thick white card rather than paper, as it strengthened the columns quite a bit, and I used a strong undiluted PVA glue.

 Next I inserted a full-length piece of stiff white card for the back which formed a nice curve.

 Finally, having desecrated yet another perfectly usable white cotton sheet, I pressed, then roughly cut suitably-sized pieces of fabric to cover the cut-out sections, and the top.

These were secured in place with masking tape.

Whether or not it will work, who knows - it was fun to make! My new lightbox will be tested out at the weekend. That is, when I have managed to pull off the next trick on my list - to find a 60 watt daylight lightbulb (old type) for my table-lamp. This is used at the top of the lightbox. "100 watt, can get that", "60 watt" - leads to shaking heads.
We will see.....

When we were children, we would make theatres out of boxes in exactly the same way, so that we could have little shows with homemade sock and glove  puppets, or characters on sticks.
The sides and front of the boxes were cut as windows, and we made curtains. The photo below, with incredibly  badly drawn lines, show the area beneath the (repeat, badly drawn lines) which is not cut out.


  1. I tried this but didn't work too good. Probably didn't do it right. Hope it works for you.

  2. Well, we'll see - worth trying, if only to eliminate!
    Did you use Photoshop at all?