3 Tricks to Turn a Spring Clamp Into Your Best Photo Accessory


The glorious spring clamp: helper of hobbyists, buddy of builders, crony of carpenters.

And now, we have 3 ways to make it the most useful object a photographer can have!

  1. Instant fill light — Use a clamp to hold a piece of mirror or white cardstock when photographing small items.

    Bouncing light off a card fills in shadows and instantly makes any shot better. (Ya hear that, Ebayers?)

  2. Clip-anywhere camera mount — Spring clamps have holes just the right size for a 1/4-inch screw. Convenient, eh?

    Use a thumbscrew and your camera’s tripod mount to attach your camera to the clamp. Then clip it anywhere a regular tripod can’t reach!

    You can fancy it up by attaching a mini tripod head, or use an umbrella adapter to hold a flash unit.

  3. Portable lighting stand — Need a bit more flexibility? Use a length of Loc-Line tubing to create a clamp mount with a flexible arm that holds a flash unit.

    Not in a DIY kind of mood? You can buy the new commercial version, but the price tag will probably put you in a DIY mood.

So much utilitarian goodness from one little clamp. How you gonna beat that, bucko?

How to Make a Clip-Anywhere Camera Mount

How to Make a Flexible Lighting Clamp

p.s. If you couldn’t get to our Guide to the Most Perfectest Panoramas on Monday, here’s the link. Sorry ’bout that!

Photo credits: Matthew G. Monroe, six million dollar dan

A Guide to Perfect Panoramas Starring 2 New Photog Tools!

feature-panoExtra photos for bloggers: 1, 2, 3

Our photos were a crooked conundrum — it was sheer panoramic pandemonium.

That is, until we found The Perfect Pano, a rotating tripod tool that clicks into place every 30 degrees so you can overlap your shots evenly. Plus, The Level Camera Cube, a triple axis bubble level that mounts to your hot shoe for straight shooting.

Their powers combined will give you the bestest, all around, straight across, most perfect shots you could ask for in one go.

The Perfect Pano  Twitter It!
$17 at the Photojojo Shop!

The Level Camera Cube  Twitter It!
$15 at the Photojojo Shop!

Never done a panorama? Don’t know how to start? You know what’s coming, don’t you…

We’re going to teach you! We’ll tell you what panoramas are, how to shoot one, how to put it together, and where to find free software to help you. Just keep reading, bucko.

Photojojo’s Guide to the Most Perfectest Panoramas


It’s Smooth Sailing for You and Your Camera: Make Your Own Steadicam!


Operators, babies’ bottoms and sometimes peanut butter…

All famously smooth! And now your dramatic sweeping pans can be smooth too.

Your digital camera can record video, and you’ve probably already taken a crack at making your own cinematographic masterpiece.

The trick to filming like a pro -> Keeping that camera steady!

Luckily you don’t need a roll of Clevelands to buy a commercial steadicam, you can make one using supplies from the hardware store!

With a homemade gimbal and camera mount, you’ll soon be shooting video so smooth, it’s almost criminal.

How to Make a Homemade Camera Stabilizer

Starting Your Photo Biz… Part 1: You Sure ‘Bout That?


So, you want to start a photo business…

Excellent! Will it be a mad whirl of fame, fortune and glitterati?

Or will it be a money-suckin’, nail-bitin’, cuss-mutterin’ festival of frustration?

We’re all about preserving your manicure and linguistic decorum, so welcome to our new series, Photojojo’s School of Photographical Bidnezz!

Here’s Part 1: a list of photo biz pros and cons to help you decide whether running your own studio would make you happy… or crazy?

Starting a Photo Business: The Pros and the Cons

Photo credit: Banalities


How to Photograph Lightning


“The reason lightning doesn’t strike twice in the same place is that the same place isn’t there the second time.”
Willie Tyler

All the more reason to get that perfect lightning photo the first time!

Here’s the lowdown on everything you need to take flabbergasting shots of this summer’s lightning storms: how to keep the camera still, how long to leave the shutter open, what to get in the shot.

Just remember to stay grounded and not be the tallest thing in the field, OK?

How to Photograph Lightning

p.s. Heads up –> Our new book comes out in 2 months!

It’s our baby and we’re really excited.

We’re looking for contacts at Readymade, Real Simple, Dwell, Oprah Magazine, Good Housekeeping and other magazines we should be in.

Know someone? Email us please help us spread the photo love.

p.p.s. This week only: Our Brit buds at Moo are giving Photojojo readers 25% off everything! Check out their spiffy biz cards, mini cards, post cards + more!

Photo credits: krunkwerke

Make Your Own Photo Puzzle Blocks

Extra photos for bloggers: 1, 2

Writer’s block.
Photographer’s block.

People say that like it’s a bad thing, but we happen to like blocks. Lego blocks, glass blocks, Irina Blok… we’re big fans.

That’s why we came up with this photo block puzzle. It’s a little like our Photo Blocks, but squarer and bigger and harder to solve, and with a bunch more photos.

It’s a set of blocks we’d proudly display on our coffee table any day of the week.

How to Make Your Own Photo Puzzle Blocks

Photo credit: jeansman


How to Make Moving Pictures (Just Like Harry Potter!)

Extra photos for bloggers: 1, 2

Snape. Malfoy. Hogwarts. Horcrux.

If none of those words make any sense to you, you’re not a Harry Potter fan.

The rest of you know that in the Wizarding World, people in photographs don’t stand still. They move, wave at you, wander out of the frame for a cup of tea…

In honor of the new Harry Potter movie (eeeeee! we can’t wait!) we’re teaching you how to make your own moving pictures.

It’s so easy, even Muggles can do it!
(That means you.)

How to Make Moving Pictures a la Harry Potter

p.s. We just snatched up the much anticipated Eye-Fi PRO Wireless Memory Card for the Photojojo Shop. Hooray for RAW uploads!


Why Your Camera Needs a Dogtag


After being separated from his owners, Bobbie the Wonder Dog walked 2,800 miles to get back home to them.

Cameras don’t do that.

If you lose your camera in some far-flung locale, it’ll need help from a good-hearted stranger to find its way home again.

Give it a leg up by attaching a dogtag with your name and address to your camera or neckstrap. Small metal or plastic ID tags only cost a few bucks, and you can get them made at any pet store.

It’s nice to depend on the kindness of strangers, but giving them a mailing address helps too.

Make a Dogtag For Your Camera

p.s. Are you following us on twitter? If not, you didn’t hear about this *charming* stop-motion video, the new most popular camera (you’ll be surprised), or get this iPhone photo tip. The cool kids follow @photojojo.

Road Trip! New Tips for On-The-Road Photography


It’s road trip time! We’ve got some shiny new tips to add to our Road Trip Photography Guide:

  1. Find weird stuff to take photos ofRoadside America: the ultimate resource for finding odd, obscure, & photogenic places.

    Create a map of your route before you get on the road and don’t miss a single photo op: Stonehenge(s)! Drive-thru trees! Space acorns! Fuh reals. Space acorns.

  2. Plot your photos on a map — Making a photo map of your trip is like a photo album and diary rolled into one.

    Eye-Fi Explore cards and GPS trackers record where your photos were taken, or you can map them in Flickr. Pull up “Your Map” (under “Organize”), then drag & drop your pics into place.

  3. Play with landmarks — Avoid boring landmark pictures by crushing them beneath your mighty feet.

    Get far enough away to make the monument look small enough to hold/prod/stomp on, pose a friend, and shoot. Godzilla’s got nothin’ on you, pal.

Have a peek at our Original Road Trip Photography Guide, then get out on the open road!

Photojojo’s Ultimate Guide to Road Trip Photography

p.s. We’re giving away an Eye-Fi Share Wireless Memory Card on Twitter … why?! Cause gosh ‘darn it, we like you. Follow or re-tweet @Photojojo before Monday to enter.

Photo credits: jasoneppink, dotbenjamin

How to Make a Leaf Silhouette Portrait

Image caption for image readers
Extra photos for bloggers: 1, 2

Forget photosynthesis. Leaves are for photo-projects-thesis!

Grab a photo and a leaf, and in few simple steps you can turn everyday foliage into a unique silhouette portrait of someone you love.

Simple and elegant, leaf silhouettes look great in a frame or on a book or a card.

So, as Biff would say, “make like a tree and get to work on a silhouette leaf portrait!”

How to Make Your Very Own Leaf Silhouette Portrait