Unusual tools that makes photography better

Started May 5, 2012 | Discussions
Aleo Veuliah
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Unusual tools that makes photography better
May 5, 2012

Hello,

  • I have seen a lot of hand made tools for photography and some others that we can buy

  • So I decided that this will be interesting, to share what we can invent or to see some esoteric brands that do these tools that can help us, maybe some find this strange, but I have seen already good solutions made

  • Ideas also count, a good idea to improve something is really interesting

  • Post here your unusual tools and ideas, or experiences that have made you to take better pictures, under all the conditions

  • Also seeing some of these solutions can lead us into another ones

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Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

God is the tangential point between zero and infinity.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

God always take the simplest way.

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Aleo Veuliah
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Re: Two of mine
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, May 5, 2012
  • First is a good flashlight and a laser to use on low light and help the camera to focus better and faster, I just point the light to where I need, the laser is great because it has a longer range distance, I use red laser for this, my flashlight has both, normal light and laser

  • The second is more unusual to some consider a tool for photography (and some may consider it silly to mention it), but I am a landscaper and this one really takes me to places I could not reach easily, I am proud to have it, bought it in second hand and in good condition

-- hide signature --

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

God is the tangential point between zero and infinity.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

God always take the simplest way.

 Aleo Veuliah's gear list:Aleo Veuliah's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2 Nikon 1 V3 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS +3 more
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LincolnB
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Some of mine
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, May 5, 2012

Handcrank flashlight - very handy for night shooting, never needs batteries

DIY beauty dish, made from a large black plastic bowl and a small clear food container

I have a 10' length of PVC braced with rebar to hold a 9'x12' muslin backdrop, mounted to my garage ceiling with rope and plastic clamps

Four $8 clamp lamps, from the lumber store, with CFL 'daylight' bulbs, for video shooting.
$12 halogen construction lamp, also for extra light for video.
Cardboard and neoprene snoots of various shapes for flash.

For reflectors I've been known to use those thin white sheets of packing material as well as office paper and occasionally the sunshade from my car when I need a big reflector.

I also have a custom power mod for my Vivitar 283 flash unit, which allows infinite manual control of the flash power.

I like to take my motorcycle to go shooting as it's much easier than a car topark and pull off to the side of the road for spontaneous landscape shots. I strap an Iron Rider Luggage bag to the back seat and put my camera bag inside that. Plenty of storage, except for my larger tripod which gets strapped on top. The smaller tripod fits in the side saddle bag.

There was no room to park a car on the side of the road at this spot:

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Johann D
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Re: Some of mine
In reply to LincolnB, May 5, 2012

The white "Pringles cap" that makes a cheap Expodisc.

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Jouko
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Hoods and reflectors
In reply to Johann D, May 5, 2012

Still the most usable but less and less used equipment to get the most out of your lenses: The hood. I have an add on one in every lens I use - execept 7.5mm Samyang, but it has a built in one, and no way to use an extra one without bad vignetting.

With mZ 40-150 I have an old Tamron hood from 80-210 mm zoom - perfect. For 14-42R I bought one from Oly ( bit prizy for a piece of plastic, but fits perfect). For 17mm prime I made one from an old glassless filter frame and 37-49mm filter adapter. Light and small, lets me use old 49mm filters when I need to, no vignetting. Allways on, so small.

Reflectors and light modifiers from cardboards and different types of plastics and aluminium folios (silver / gold). More versatile than what I have seen elsewhere. Cheap and light, just needs some velcro tape to add to a flash.

Jouko

'The best camera in the world is the one you have with you when you need it'

http://lehtokukka.smugmug.com/
http://jouko-lehto.artistwebsites.com/

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Isabel Cutler
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Great idea for a thread. Thank you. (nt)
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, May 5, 2012
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tinternaut
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Re: Small bean bag comes in useful from time to time
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, May 5, 2012

I've also used a pint of beer as a makeshift tripod from time to time...

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Aleo Veuliah
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Re: Some of mine
In reply to LincolnB, May 5, 2012

Thank you for participating

Nice picture and nice motorbike

The landscape is good also, liked much, and composition is good

-- hide signature --

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

God is the tangential point between zero and infinity.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

God always take the simplest way.

 Aleo Veuliah's gear list:Aleo Veuliah's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2 Nikon 1 V3 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS +3 more
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Aleo Veuliah
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Re: Small bean bag comes in useful from time to time
In reply to tinternaut, May 5, 2012

Thank you, for participating

A bag of beans can also add weight to stabilize better a tripod

tinternaut wrote:

I've also used a pint of beer as a makeshift tripod from time to time...

-- hide signature --
-- hide signature --

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

God is the tangential point between zero and infinity.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

God always take the simplest way.

 Aleo Veuliah's gear list:Aleo Veuliah's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2 Nikon 1 V3 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS +3 more
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Aleo Veuliah
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Re: Great idea for a thread. Thank you. (nt) - Let's see if
In reply to Isabel Cutler, May 5, 2012

Thank you, let's see if something funny or useful appear, sometimes simple ideas give great results

Isabel Cutler wrote:

-- hide signature --

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

God is the tangential point between zero and infinity.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

God always take the simplest way.

 Aleo Veuliah's gear list:Aleo Veuliah's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2 Nikon 1 V3 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS +3 more
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Aleo Veuliah
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Re: Hoods and reflectors
In reply to Jouko, May 5, 2012

Jouko wrote:

Still the most usable but less and less used equipment to get the most out of your lenses: The hood. I have an add on one in every lens I use - execept 7.5mm Samyang, but it has a built in one, and no way to use an extra one without bad vignetting.

With mZ 40-150 I have an old Tamron hood from 80-210 mm zoom - perfect. For 14-42R I bought one from Oly ( bit prizy for a piece of plastic, but fits perfect). For 17mm prime I made one from an old glassless filter frame and 37-49mm filter adapter. Light and small, lets me use old 49mm filters when I need to, no vignetting. Allways on, so small.

Reflectors and light modifiers from cardboards and different types of plastics and aluminium folios (silver / gold). More versatile than what I have seen elsewhere. Cheap and light, just needs some velcro tape to add to a flash.

Jouko

'The best camera in the world is the one you have with you when you need it'

True, improvising reflector is really useful, thank you for participating, is ideas like this that I like to see, and the best is that they can be useful for others

-- hide signature --

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

God is the tangential point between zero and infinity.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

God always take the simplest way.

 Aleo Veuliah's gear list:Aleo Veuliah's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2 Nikon 1 V3 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS +3 more
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William Russell
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This is mine
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, May 5, 2012

I made a cradle out of 3/36" aluminum and apx. 8" x 4" with the ends bed up with a hole threaded to mount it on my tripod. My wife made a bean bag which fits in the small cradle and attaches with velcro. Now when using a tripod and having to move around a lot and needing the camera off and back on the tripod it saves a lot of time when a tripod is needed. In other words I simply lay the camera on the bean bag for a more stable position.

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JayBratcher
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Just a couple...
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, May 5, 2012

I build a lot of things, especially for video. Here is part of a stationary mount I built from PVC, designed to be mounted on a column. It has since been replaced with a Gorillapod, but worked pretty well for it's intended purpose. The photo is the camera mount only - I'll try to find a picture of the whole thing...

The lines illustrate how it was made - PVC end caps (with a hole drilled in them) at each end of a T, with a 1/4" x 5" eye bolt to act as the mount. The bolt is held in place by 2 nuts butted up against the end cap.

Next up - a snoot, improvised from foamcore and gaff tape - shown here on my trusty old Nikon SB-600

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DonovanDwyer
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Re: Some of mine
In reply to LincolnB, May 5, 2012

That bike is one accessory that I would like to add in the future

LincolnB wrote:

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amalric
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Re: Unusual tools that makes photography better
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, May 5, 2012

My own claim to immortality (!)

The retrofinder:

Am.
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grantham
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Re: Two of mine
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, May 5, 2012

I have to ask if it fits in your pocket?
ken

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DonovanDwyer
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Re: Unusual tools that makes photography better
In reply to amalric, May 5, 2012

that is BRILLIANT!

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Aleo Veuliah
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Re: Just a couple...
In reply to JayBratcher, May 5, 2012

Nice imagination on the first one, looks really good

The second also a good workaround, and yes good old Nikon SB-600, I had one

Thank you

Hope people get inspired by these posts

JayBratcher wrote:

I build a lot of things, especially for video. Here is part of a stationary mount I built from PVC, designed to be mounted on a column. It has since been replaced with a Gorillapod, but worked pretty well for it's intended purpose. The photo is the camera mount only - I'll try to find a picture of the whole thing...

The lines illustrate how it was made - PVC end caps (with a hole drilled in them) at each end of a T, with a 1/4" x 5" eye bolt to act as the mount. The bolt is held in place by 2 nuts butted up against the end cap.

Next up - a snoot, improvised from foamcore and gaff tape - shown here on my trusty old Nikon SB-600

-- hide signature --

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

God is the tangential point between zero and infinity.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

God always take the simplest way.

 Aleo Veuliah's gear list:Aleo Veuliah's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2 Nikon 1 V3 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS +3 more
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Aleo Veuliah
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Re: WOW this is a good LCD Hood
In reply to amalric, May 5, 2012

Good and for sure it works fine even with hard sunlight

Liked a lot the idea, going to try to build one for the GF1

-- hide signature --

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

God is the tangential point between zero and infinity.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

God always take the simplest way.

 Aleo Veuliah's gear list:Aleo Veuliah's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2 Nikon 1 V3 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS +3 more
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amalric
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Re: WOW this is a good LCD Hood
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, May 5, 2012

Remember it's a Kiev 60 finder (lots on eBay), and although it's in a square format it covers the 4/3 one pretty well, at least the old LCD. I paid it a few euros at a fleamarket.

When folded it looks like this:

It has a lid, which is pressed in place by a bracket. or you can use your thumb

Clever thread by the way. I love DIY, we should recycle things instead of throwing money out of the window.

Am.

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