Awesome Fill Flash Hack

I’ve always been the kind of guy who has relied on a simple rubber band and bit of white cardboard to create the perfect bounce for my flash. Sure it looks a little chintzy, but it definitely does get the job done—and at a literal fraction of the cost of fancier systems. The key is that you want to point the flash straight up and let the white card provide a softer, more diffused flash illumination of the subject. Then a guy named Gary Fong invented his "Lightsphere" and I thought it seemed pretty cool—and unlike what my simple card could achieve. The Lightsphere diffuses the flash in every direction, making it very broad, very omni-directional, and a very good idea. Apparently it’s a good seller, too—as any device that actually solves a problem so well should be. Still, for those of us who prefer something a little more hacked together there’s got to be another way to build this mousetrap, right? Thanks to the DIY Photography blog I now know what that is: a translucent plastic cup. For me any homemade hack has to be simple and minimal at its essence; I don’t want to be gluing and cutting and taping a bunch of things together. That can be more trouble than it’s worth. But simply slapping a disposable cup on my flash—that’s something I can get my head around. And I bet I’ll get a few more strange looks than I do with even my homemade cardboard bounce card rubberbanded to my speedlight. Check it out at, and click through to the original inventor’s Flickr stream as well.

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