How to build a mini scrim

In this next “How to” post I would like to share with you a way to build a small scrim for your portrait photography of your toys. Normally I just use simple sandwich paper that I attach to my lightsource to diffuse my toys. However, there are times where I don’t have enough space or too much of a complex setup like in a diorama where I need more control of my light. For these kind of occasions I was looking for a solution. So I just built myself a small scrim that I can use in combination with the mini superclamp arm that I wrote about before. Here is a quick step by step tutorial on how I built it.

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Items and tools that you need:

Well, since this is quite straight forward and a simple build, you don’t need that much: wooden sticks, diffusor material like sandwich paper or white kite fabric, a scissor, a handsaw and glue.

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Let’s build!

First up cut your wooden sticks down to your desired size. I used wooden cocktail toothpicks that I had left from the last party and chose to build a 10cm by 10cm frame.

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Next, use wood glue to glue the sticks together. When everything is dry, whip out your diffusor paper (sandwich paper in my case) and glue your frame onto it. In my first try I cut the paper to the size of my frame first and then glued it on. I found out that it’s easier the other way around. Also you can align more of the frame on a larger piece of paper if you decide to build more. It just makes everything easier and faster.

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Let it dry and then cut away the excess paper. Remember to leave small clips on each side, so that you can wrap them around the frame later on.

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And voila, there you go. The whole build takes less than 30 minutes and is very easy. Small effort, but huge value for your photography.

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The photo on top is without the scrim and the one below is with scrim. I have to admit that in this case I kind of like the one without scrim more, because it’s more dramatic, but if you are going for a softer, beautylike shot, the scrim can work wonders. You can see how the colors in the one below are not that saturated and more pleasing to the eye.

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I love it in combination with the superclamp 🙂



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