How to set up a photo shoot with recycled items

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My hubby is an awesome photographer!  I love the photos he takes.  Every summer I make a book of photos of the kids that he took over the past year. I love getting to display the kids – and the literally hundreds of photos my hubby takes of them each month.  Shutterfly makes creating a hard cover photo book so easy!  They have it linked to be able to download your pictures directly off of your facebook wall or Picassa (or you can upload them manually).  Love that!  They must have known it was the Quirky Kid’s Birthday Season (aka, new photo book time).  If you want your own photo books, check them out, and comment to get a gift card towards your own book (and a chance to win a 200$ gift card)! Quirky Lighting photo tips
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And now… here are some of the recycled items that my hubby has used to help take these phenomenal photos!  I love how he can turn trash into amazing photo treasures! Disclaimer:  This is my description of how he sets up shots.  I am by no means an “expert” – I am a point-and-shoot type of gal, this is just my description of what he does.  If you want to learn more about one of these “hacks” let me know and I’ll try to finagle my hubby into a guest post… or you can check out The Strobist.  I *think* that is where my hubby learned most of his light theory.

. Quirky Lighting photo tips

Hopefully, some of these items will help you as you capture and catalog the moments with your kids.  Most of these tips are used with an off-camera flash, but I have modified them to use on my blog – and I just use my on-camera flash on the auto settings.  Even point-and-click people like me can use recycled items to help us take better photos!
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3×5 cards for on-camera “bounce”.

We bend the card over and around the on-camera flash, and affix it with a bit of sticky tack.  This helps give a “glowing” look to photos.  With my little Canon, you can see how I lined the camera up to the corner of the card, cut where the red lines are and then bent where the black lines are to create this “bounce” card.  I attached the card to the camera with sticky tack, then slightly bent the card to “frame” the camera’s flash better.  I love that both the camera and diffuser fits in my back pocket easily!

3X5 Card Photo Lighting Technique

Plastic Grocery Sack to diffuse light.

If you have an off-camera flash, tying a grocery sack over the light this makes a great “lightbox” and helps spread the light across your kids face and cuts down on shadows.  But even if you only have an on-camera flash, cut up a section of the plastic bag and with a rubber band wrap it around your flash.  I love the glow the bag helps give photos.

Grocery sack photo diffuser

Car reflectors as light reflectors.

These are great if you are working with natural light or a window.  Put them opposite the natural light source to reflect light back onto whatever you are taking a picture of to help lessen shadows.

White Sheets make giant diffusers.

Shoot a flash either through the sheet or at the sheet (so the light bounces off the sheet back onto the person) for a giant diffuser!  I love the even light!

Semi-transparent Tupperware diffuser.

The theory works like the grocery sack.  Place it over your flash to diffuse the light.  For more directional light, add aluminum foil to a side or sides.  The problem with this recycled light trick is that it is hard to balance on-camera, but it works great for an off-camera flash you can sit down somewhere.

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I’d like to hear about how you captured your child’s moments! Share your story or upload a photo (optional), and in return Shutterfly will gift you $5 off your next photo book to commemorate life’s joyous moments, and you”ll be entered for a chance to win a $200 Shutterfly Gift card.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Shutterfly. The opinions and text are all mine. Offer valid for $5 off one photo book order and valid for one-time redemption per member. Taxes, shipping and handling will apply. BlogFrog hosted gift card contest live from June 17th to July 14th. A winner will be randomly chosen and announced on July 18th. All participants remain the copyright holder of their photos.



Rachel About Rachel

An original "Quirky Momma" blogger and "Mommy" to six kids under six, when Rachel is not wiping crayon off the walls or wading through laundry, she can be found exploring and creating with her kiddos. She hopes to be someone who acts justly, loves kindness and walks humbly before God (Micah 6:8).

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