Make a DIY Sparkling Reflector


Extra photos for bloggers: 1, 2, 3

The reflector is one of our favorite tools; simple, easy to use, and *shiny*.

This DIY has those same great features, with added sparkle!

We’re going to show you how to make your own disco-ball-esque reflector using mirrors. You can use this DIY reflector to make a cool grid of light to shine on your subjects or to ward off vampires.

If you <3 shiny things as much as we do, then you'll love this DIY that will turn your plain old silver and white reflectors green with envy.

Make Your Own Reflector

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Why it’s cool:

ingred-sm One of our favorite parts of photography is experimenting and finding new inspiration.

This is a DIY double whammy; we were inspired by a glamorous sequined party dress, and we get to experiment with new photo techniques. Sweet!

This reflector uses mirror pieces arranged in a grid to reflect the pattern back onto the subject. Think concentrated disco ball awesomeness.

Ingredients:

paint-sm

  • A piece of foam-core board
  • Mirrored tiles*
  • Glass cutter
  • Gloves
  • Super glue or other effective adhesive
  • A ruler or straight edge

*Note:We found 12″x12″ tiles locally. Feel free to go on a scavenger hunt for smaller tiles so there’s less cutting involved!

SAFETY REQUIREMENT: The mirror pieces are capital “s” Sharp! It’s important to wear gloves while handling the glass at all times. We used rubber kitchen gloves, but anything other than soft cotton should work well.

STEP 1: Bigger Isn’t Always Better

paint-smThe tiles are a little big, so let’s make them smaller.

The glass cutter works by scoring the glass and then applying pressure so that it cracks along the scored line.

We’re going to cut the first tile in half, so score a line down the center.

TIP: The glass cutter can have a mind of it’s own at times. Don’t worry if your lines aren’t perfectly spaced or perfectly straight!

Step 2: Do a Split: Snap the Big Tile in Half

paint-sm This is the fun part!

Hold the tile with two hands, one on the edge on either side of the scored line.

Then, apply firm, even pressure to the back side of the tile until it snaps in half. Continue to do this until you have strips that are about one inch wide.

Step 3: New High Score: Make 1×1 Tiles

paint-smTake your mirror strips and score across them so that you’re left with about a 1″x1″ square.
Feel free to go bigger or smaller as you see fit.

Step 4: Glue Time

paint-smNow, take your small tiles and glue them onto the foam-core.

We’re using a grid pattern, but we use that term lightly. Eyeball it and feel free to get a little reckless!

Step 5: Sparkle Time

paint-sm You’re done!

Find the nearest person and add some sparkle to their life!

Tips for Use: In order to get the best effect from the reflector, use a large, hard light source to reflect back on your subject. Thankfully, us Earthlings have the big, beautiful sun to work with!

Get a Little More Glam (We Don’t Blame You)

  • Go outside the lines: use a funky pattern like a spiral for you reflector.
  • Tempt fate: smash the mirror tiles to get crazy shapes.
  • Spruce it up: use colored foam-core to make it unique
Posted in DIY, Tutorials