howtomakeareflector - natalie jenkins photography

How to make a reflector from household items

a few simple steps towards shooting captivating portraits


Who wants to spend money on a pro reflector when you can make one yourself using materials that are already available to  you? Here's a step-by-step instructional on how to put one together in about 10 minutes. 

All you will need are these items: a piece of cardboard of any size you desire (my 2' x 3' piece works very well), duct tape, and aluminum foil.  

Go ahead and tear enough pieces of foil that you will be able to cover the cardboard with. I tore 3 pieces, but I probably could've gotten away 2 larger pieces.

Start with taping down the edge of one piece of foil. 

Continue to tape down each piece of foil, but don't tape down the edges just yet.

Flip over the cardboard and trim any foil down to at least a half inch or so.

Now you're ready to border the edges with tape. Make sure to pull the foil and tape taught before you stick it down permanently.

And that's it! Seriously, it works just as well as any reflector you'd end up buying from a photo retailer, and you can have the satisfaction that you made it yourself. 

Now get out there and try it on for size! Start by practicing on your friend, family member, or partner to make sure you can get a handle on it before using it on a customer. I torture my poor boyfriend by making him a test subject for any ideas I might have before a shoot. It's best to get really comfortable using a new tool prior to using it professionally. 

Have fun using your new reflector! Beware the power within, it has been known to make people squint.

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