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DIY Fluorescent Photography Studio Lighting with T8 Bulbs - Make your own kino flo portrait lighting

1766 ratings | 138524 views
This is a DIY fluorescent studio lighting photography set-up that is perfect for portrait photography and beauty shots and headshots. You can build it yourself for under $400 dollars. I began using this DIY fluorescent lighting technique nearly 15 years ago, long before kino-flo’s and Peter Hurley became popular. I have been asked to describe it so many times that I decided it was time to put together a few tutorials to show how to build it and how to use it. So for under $400.00 you have a 4 light studio lighting set-up that is suitable for still AND video photography and unlike my previous set-up these units can be hung from a glide track or stand mounted in other a horizontal or vertical position. They are more energy efficient, brighter and they make no noise that will interfere with your sound recordings. How well do they light? All of my narrative was shot using this DIY set-up. I almost forgot the best part…. little to no flicker! You can shoot portraits and headshots at shutter speeds higher then 125th of a second with no adverse effects! Be sure to Watch Part II in the series: http://youtu.be/9MmsLGqS-rY To get read about updates to these lights: http://tog.chat/t8fluorescents UPDATE: I now have an LED version of these lights: - watch the video here: https://youtu.be/VvyW2BZzvKo SUBSCRIBE so that you don’t miss NEW VIDEOS! https://tog.chat/ytsubscribe MY WEBSITE & BLOG http://www.JoeEdelman.com WANNA SEE MY GEAR? https://joeedelman.fyi/gear PATREON Help me HELP YOU: https://tog.chat/patreon or donate via PayPal: https://tog.chat/paypal SHOP FOR TOGSWAG℠ http://www.togswag.com LET'S CONNECT! - Like & Follow on FACEBOOK: http://tog.chat/facebook - Follow on TWITTER: http://tog.chat/twitter - Follow on INSTAGRAM: http://tog.chat/instagram - Check my boards on PINTEREST: http://tog.chat/pinterest - Connect on LINKEDIN: http://tog.chat/linkedin - Connect on GOOGLE+: http://tog.chat/googleplus FTC Disclosure: No sponsors have paid for or provided equipment or material shown in this video #ishootpeople #joeedelman
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Text Comments (248)
Maz (1 month ago)
Joe... Is that really you? :O WOW. What's the secret?
Divino Dayacap (3 months ago)
"I Shoot People" .........
Joe Edelman (3 months ago)
Indeed I do Divino Dayacap! With a camera - of course! 📸
Sandra Maniscalco (5 months ago)
Wow! I've spent a lot of time watching your videos today (and there are so many more that I need to watch)! Very helpful information. Thank you so much!!!!
Barky Von Schnauzer (8 months ago)
Wow! You look amazing. What was your secret to becoming healthy? Curious minds want to know.
MJ Stagg (8 months ago)
Dude! Great video @Joe Edelman !!! Fab DIY tutorial AND inspiring to see that you've taken your health more seriously and slimmed down. I'm on the same path and have about 75 lbs. to go before I'm at my ideal weight! Kudos, sir and thanks, as always, for the great content!
Mj Gungon (10 months ago)
First it was nothing, then when your logo came out the video, i totally confused, it was like "who is he?" Checked the comments and its you, youve gained too much? Any way have a nice day
Clyde 1066 (1 year ago)
Holy cow! From eighties nerd to modern day hipster. Great recreation of yourself; I bet there is an interesting story. Your instructional videos are world-class and so is your attitude. Keep up the good work, Mr. Edelman!
Joe Edelman (1 year ago)
LOL - Thank you Clyde 1066! The current version is the "real me" and how I looked before I became "Fat Joe". 😎
Mark Harris (1 year ago)
The aliens have kidnapped our Joe! You have done brilliantly losing the weight but even better keeping it off. Personally I think your entire image now is better for three reasons: 1) You have an individual style now and I'm a big believer in individualism, who wants to be a sheep in a flock of identical sheep. 2) It must be better for marketing as it shows you have style, and people will remember you if not your name. 3) I have a feeling you are more comfortable with the present image, unfortunately too many go through life never being the person they've been forced to be. I think out of all the changes it's the "Smile" finger tattoo I like the best, it shows off your sense of fun. Well done sir.
Marcelo Góes (1 year ago)
oh boy. Only in the end I realised that it was Joe Eldeman all the time and not a guest. =)
Marcelo Góes (1 year ago)
you did a very nice work. congratulations.
Joe Edelman (1 year ago)
Indeed - that was me Marcelo Góes!
Lightbox Images (1 year ago)
Where do you get the shopping list ?
VietKiemTruGian (1 year ago)
==Doesn't say where to find the information on the mounting collar options== Same here. I click on the link (http://www.joeedelman.com/fluorescent-studio-lighting-follow-up/ ) and it bring me to your home page (http://www.joeedelman.com/) . Can you post the link so I can purchase the mounting collar for my set ? Thank you Joe
VietKiemTruGian (1 year ago)
Thank Joe !
Joe Edelman (1 year ago)
Here you go VietKiemTruGian - https://www.joeedelman.photography/fluorescent-studio-lighting-follow-up/
曼思攝影XRoPhoto (1 year ago)
it was 2012! wow! such an amazing quality video!!
Joe Edelman (1 year ago)
Thank you for the kind words XRoPhoto 曼思攝影 ! Be sure to subscribe so that you don't miss any videos!
Axis of_Peter (1 year ago)
I saw your more recent videos first. You look like a different person. What a transformation! And the cowboy shirts top it off. Good for the brand, I bet. I love your videos. I shoot, make some mistakes, then come back and correct based on what you are doing. So helpful!
Joe Edelman (1 year ago)
Thank you for noticing Axis of_Peter! Mistakes are good as long as you are taking the time to learn from them.
It is amazing how much better it makes you feel
Joe Edelman (1 year ago)
It sure does guru photo myladuthurai! Thanks for commenting!
Roland Paniti (1 year ago)
WTF maan? :D Same movement, same ears, same eyes, same mouth, is it Joe Edelman' s twin? And then realised...
Roland Paniti (1 year ago)
Your style has changed as well, to the right direction:)
Joe Edelman (1 year ago)
LOL - indeed Rolexxx - that was a me I would love to forget.
tom Jenn (2 years ago)
Thanks Joe. Nice lighting set up. One more thing, did you have a special diet, exercise plan to get into shape? Please share for all us old guys that need to drop a few pounds.
Joe Edelman (1 year ago)
Your welcome tom Jenn! No special diet - it was mostly a matter of portion size and exercise.
Wendy Gregory (2 years ago)
Thank you for sharing this. This was about 4 years ago and I'm wondering if you have found a way to implement and LED version of this? Thanks!
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
Your very welcome Wendy Gregory ! Ask and I will deliver... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VvyW2BZzvKo 😎😎 Please be sure to subscribe so that you don't miss any videos!
BlackRaven156 (2 years ago)
This is great!
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
Thank you for the kind words BlackRaven156 ! Be sure to subscribe so that you don't miss any videos!
Igor Sharykin (2 years ago)
Hey, good job men!! you lost lots of weight!!
Igor Sharykin (2 years ago)
Thank you:-)
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
I am a CC user Igor Sharykin. I love that you get the updates right away - plus the Photography CC package gives you Lightroom and Photoshop at a very reasonable price.
Igor Sharykin (2 years ago)
I do :-)
Igor Sharykin (2 years ago)
My i ask you about post production software (Lightroom) - what you will recommend - go to cc version and pay every month 9.99 or just both 6th version?
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
Thank you for the kind words Igor Sharykin ! Be sure to subscribe so that you don't miss any videos!
Patrick Latour (2 years ago)
Joe, I have to say a big thank you. Having stopped photography a couple of years ago, you lit back that spark inside of me. Your videos are so clear, refreshing, easy to follow and understand (even for non-english guys, like me) and did I say funny ? And congrats for your new look!!
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
I appreciate your kind words and comments Patrick Latour! Thanks for subscribing - it's great to have you along for the ride!
Cristo Power (2 years ago)
hi i want to know where I can place the screw 1/4 '' - 20 x 1/2 ... today buy these lights in homedepot and really are great, also mean I could not find the semi-gloss paint but other than that brand semi-gloss and let me know if I can use another painting another brand ... thanks and my English is not very good lol. I give 100/100 for this video
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
You can use it without paint Cristo Power TV. Some people feel they are a bit bright with the mirror finish - but its all a matter of preference. If you contact me via my website http://www.joeedelman.com with a link to where you wish to place the logo, I can email one to you.
Cristo Power (2 years ago)
thanks, but I think it looks very professional without paint, thanks to you I am preparing my very professional studio. thank you very much and I'll follow you in all your upcoming videos. I would like to have a logo of your page to place it within my page. thanks and keep it up you are a professional
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
Thanks for commenting Cristo Power TV! Be sure to subscribe so that you don't miss any videos. You could use any soft white or satin finish spray paint. The 1/4" - 20 x 1/2" is the bolt that I use to mount the standoff hangars. You can see how I mounted them beginning at: https://youtu.be/OBPDSBCoN2c?t=4m40s
Tafsir Ahmed (2 years ago)
The video i was looking for very long time! Many thanks. (Thumbs UP).
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
Thanks Tafsir Ahmed and THANKS for subscribing - great to have you along for the ride!
Mick Hanlon (2 years ago)
Wow had double take and then read the name,Jeo amazing transformation .I am a big guy and seeing you has given me inspiration, your light mod is cool to.
Kornel Haduch (1 year ago)
I thought Joe hired some other photographer ;D
Amahri Howland (1 year ago)
Same here! I just started following Joe and have been going through his latest video's and then this one popped up. I'll have the troops stand down. Great transformation!
Mick Hanlon (2 years ago)
I lost a lot of weight years ago and put more back on I started exercising straight after your video keep up all your great work thanks from Dublin, Ireland.
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
Thanks for noticing Mick Hanlon! It is amazing how much better it makes you feel.
Michael Zerivitz DDS (2 years ago)
Joe: Have you tried T8 LED tubes instead of Fluorescents? What do you think about the new daylight (4000K and 5000K) LED's for studio portraits?
Michael Zerivitz DDS (2 years ago)
Thanks for the reply and I gotta tell you that your new healthy look is great.... good for you and best of health!! - MZ
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
I haven't used the LED tubes in the fluorescent fixtures Michael Zerivitz DDS, but I am aware of them. I have built similar fixtures with LED lights: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VvyW2BZzvKo The daylight balanced LED's are great - just be sure they have a CRI of over 80. Be sure to subscribe so that you don't miss any videos!
Bill Hardman (2 years ago)
I currently have a Spiderlite TD6 with 6 bulbs that I use for constant lighting. Of course the cost of getting a 2nd unit is above my budget. I am thinking of building one of these t8 units to compliment my Spiderlite and was wondering if you think they would work together or should I scrap the idea? btw, truly enjoy your videos.
Photo Zavaleta (2 years ago)
what's with the dramatic change in your looks? not judging obviously, simple curiosity
The Post Color Blog (2 years ago)
Now that it's been brought up, how did you do it? (not looking for anything detailed) - would you say it's 90% healthy eating, mostly?
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
LOl - no worrries Photo Zavaleta - just decided it was time to get healthy. Thanks for noticing!
Hi Joe, do you think this kind of lighting is a good solution for greenbox productions ?
Thank you !
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
Do you mean green screen almost perfect production app? If so - the answer is YES! Be sure to subscribe so that you don't miss any videos!
Jake Alexander Bryant (2 years ago)
Hi Joe! I built 2 fluorescent lamps, consisting of 4 T8 bulbs each lamp, purchased at Home Depot. I found $49 lamps with a metal safety grid protecting the front. The bulbs were the Phillips T8, approx 2800 lumens, 80 CRI, Daylight 5000K. Question: With my first test shots the pics lean towards the yellow/green hue. Do you always adjust for the added yellow/green in post? (assuming you get yellow/greenish hues also). If so, the little extra adjustment is an acceptable compromise between the low cost ($49 + $40 bulbs each lamp) and the quality/output of light. I'm really impressed, so thanks again!
Jake Alexander Bryant (2 years ago)
That sounds straight forward and simple. Thanks!
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
You can adjust that easily in post Jake Alexander Bryant or do a custom white balance in camera. With my set-up I found that both Nikon and Canon were able to accommodate the lights very well on Auto white balance - but it is not a big deal to either use the eye dropper in camera raw or do a custom white balance before you shoot.
Terence Kearns (2 years ago)
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
Thank you +Terence Kearns !
Damarcus Miller (2 years ago)
Joe, I really appreciate you replying back. Very professional of you.
Damarcus Miller (2 years ago)
I have a question Joe Edelman. If I wanted to defuse the light, What would i use to cover it?
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
+Damarcus Miller you could use almost any kind of diffusion material from a bed sheet to something sheer like a curtain - it depends on how much light you want to cut out. I would suggest visiting a local fabric store or if you are looking for larger pieces of material with no seams try a company like www.dazian.com
Damarcus Miller (2 years ago)
I've come up with the solution to the mounting issue. I drilled a metal flag pole holder to the back of the light and slid the open part of the holder onto my light stand. PERFECT !!
Damarcus Miller (2 years ago)
http://www.thoughtfulphotographer.com/fluorescent-studio-lighting-follow-up/ Doesn't say where to find the information on the mounting collar options
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
Sorry +Damarcus Miller - the website just went through an overhaul - http://www.joeedelman.com/fluorescent-studio-lighting-follow-up/
Sonic Sinema (2 years ago)
QUESTION: I have a box (like 50 bulbs) of "T9" bulbs. Will these have the save benefits as the T8 bulbs?
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
+Sonic Cinema if I am not mistaken - T9 bulbs are circular - hence I am not sure exactly what your question is.
John Cruz (2 years ago)
excellent video!!
TheMrFiggs (2 years ago)
This video is fantastic, but two questions. The model of fixture in the video is different than the current one on home depot. On the web site it is listed as "High Bay Industrial 6-Light Grey Hanging Fluorescent Fixture" which is slightly different than yours. Is this note worthy? I wouldn't think it is. Also aren't most fixtures designed for installation with a grounding wire and such? How did you fit it to work with standard plugs? Any help would be appreciated! Thank you!
TheMrFiggs (2 years ago)
that's all fine! You've given so much info as it is. Thanks for replying! 
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
+TheMrFiggs It isn't in the tutorial. As I mentioned - I added the three prong plug later. Consult with an electrician if you are unsure. I only provide photography advice. Regarding how it would compare to the other fixture - I am sorry - but I have no clue. I created a video sharing a rig that I made and use. I never claimed to be an expert on industrial lighting fixtures .
TheMrFiggs (2 years ago)
With regards response, would you know a simple method for converting it to such a plug? I only ask because I seem to be missing that part of the tutorial. One last question, how would this rig compare to a similar T-5 four bulb fixture? 
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
+TheMrFiggs I can't speak for the version that Home Depot currently shows - but you can still get the fixtures at Amazon - http://amzn.to/1MvZajd As for the grounding wire - I have since added a three prong plug. It of course worked fine without it - but it is certainly safer with it.
Brett Rogers (2 years ago)
great video. I just built one. Question. Can you post a link for the 'mounting collar reflector holder'? I cannot find an example of that online. Thanks
Brett Rogers (2 years ago)
+Joe Edelman Thanks
Joe Edelman (2 years ago)
+Brett Rogers They are almost impossible to find at this point. Refer to this article for variations that readers have come up with: http://www.thoughtfulphotographer.com/fluorescent-studio-lighting-follow-up/
John Muriel (3 years ago)
Loving your work, very useful and professional Can you direct me to a link where I can purchase the collar mounts. I'm having difficulty finding them
Joe Edelman (3 years ago)
+John Muriel (JONO) http://www.thoughtfulphotographer.com/fluorescent-studio-lighting-follow-up/
ceereec (3 years ago)
Wow, thanks!
makeithap (3 years ago)
So Glad to have you back....
Ashton Boni (3 years ago)
thank you sir for the best DIY set up on florecents .
AndreAgonia (3 years ago)
7:43 that studio is awesome, do you have a color code for that walls? Also I wish I'd be able to purchase this, if that costs 350$ in America you can rest assured that in Italy it costs the equivalent of AT LEAST 600$ :/
Joe Edelman (3 years ago)
+AndreCorner The walls are simply white. Semi-gloss paint
Bob Karstens (4 years ago)
Brilliant stuff, just what I was looking for et voila!
aldosv73 (4 years ago)
wow awesome, But I think I can build it for less. I'll let you know.
Paulo Jordao (4 years ago)
I was looking at the list and I noticed that the t8 bulbs you've mentioned in your video (Daylight Deluxe) are actually 6500k. Is that correct or I'm looking something wrong at Homedepot?
Barky Von Schnauzer (4 years ago)
Perfect! Just perfect. Thanks again..
Ammar Selo (4 years ago)
Thank you for your review Joe. Would a T5 HO work for this? it has almost identical CRI to the T8 (around 85)
TAU DYNASTY (4 years ago)
can i use this lights for outfits videos? what kind of background do i need for brighter videos? thank you so much for your videos, you are my teacher :)
Claudia ft Privacy (4 years ago)
For modeling cloths i dont know if you would like this kind of light because it makes the picture very flat. In modeling you need to create the beauty of the model and cloths, so you need to make it 3d on a 2d medium. What you got for that is true color, shadows and ...(over exposure light) i am sorry i lost the word. Further you got the composition from the picture you can divide it in a 3d square box with 9 equal smaller boxes inside.... For ground, Mid ground and back ground. With light you need to learn to play, it is a game with endless much variations. To shoot a nice picture start with creating the background as first, like a interesting building or tree or what ever, make a nice picture with that first because you mostly cant move buildings and trees. Then you create your mid ground, this can be your model or an bench or something. And then the for ground. For lighting from models you got more on directional light like with softboxes with grid's or reflectors so you can play with shadows, true colors and over exposure. The light described here goes anywhere, some times you need that and sometimes you dont want that. It all depends what you want to reach with your picture.
Mitch Tillison (4 years ago)
I love this light - thanks, Joe! https://www.flickr.com/photos/theblindhog/14761526892/
Creativeskate26 (3 years ago)
+Mitch Tillison What color temp did you get? Or a link to your exact lights would be helpful thanks!!!
hbrookes (4 years ago)
Great rig..one question about dimming..couldn't you mount toggle switches on the back to turn off single bulbs from 6 to say 4 or even 2?  just a thought..
Thomas Plummer (4 years ago)
Denver Robbins (4 years ago)
Just about to build 20 of these for our FX studio. we decided to go with Kino T8 bulbs for the best color match. 
Steph Day (4 years ago)
Hi Joe I love your videos. Thank you for all of your tips they are going to help me start my own studio. I was just wondering, Would this work just as well with LED tube lights ? If so would you do a video with LED tube lights they're said to be WAY more efficient and just as bright. Whereas the the T8 fluorescent bulbs consume 38 watts the LED tube lights only consume 8 watts with the same amount of lighting and no Flickr at all.
ladefreakndah (3 years ago)
▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ The lumens T8 and T12 bulbs output varies. It can be less than 2000 lumens or up to 3000 lumens. You have to look at the packaging. I have 90cri T8 bulbs that only put out 1800 lumens. Far less than what you mention in the video.  ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬
Lorenzo Hodges (4 years ago)
Thanks for the great video and your time!  I have searched the net and can't find it, but do you have a shorter 2foot version.  In case you want to do the light below and above, like shooting through a rectangle.  I was thinking one could get the Lithonia housing your have and chopping it in half?  Or would that ballast put out too much power? 
Stephanie Mohan (4 years ago)
Thanks so much for  your wonderful tutorial.  My electrician husband built these for me and bought Phi;;ups Daylight Deluxe and we are getting a green cast.  Have any ideas you might share with me?  It does not say the CRI on the built.  Just says F32T8/DX 32 Watt.  Any suggestions?
Stephanie Mohan (4 years ago)
I cant remember which bulbs we changed too, but got rid of the greencast.  when I get to the studio, i will tell you what we bought.
Stephanie Mohan (4 years ago)
we not only got different bulbs, but I did a grey card white balance AND calibrated my monitor again.  I think we got it.  changing the bulbs helped a lot.
SpectreSoundStudios (4 years ago)
I am curious about one thing, however:  Are you using high CRI bulbs or just something from Home Depot?  If you are using high CRI, where did you source the bulbs?
SpectreSoundStudios (4 years ago)
Great job!
Ryan Rizzio (4 years ago)
Freaking genius.
Tevin Harris (4 years ago)
would it be better to get grounded plugs?
heysalsaguy (3 years ago)
+Tevin Harris If it is a grounded fixture, then it should have grounded plugs. Surprisingly, not all fixtures are grounded. would imagine that the fixtures would have a simple wiring diagram though that would say whether it has a ground connection or not. BTW: I am NOT an electrician by any stretch of the imagination, but I have learned some things by spending way too much time at the hardware store.
Tevin Harris (4 years ago)
Joe, I want to say that i appreciate your work and i appreciate the fact that you take the time out of your busy schedule to respond to the people who ask you question and you are even willing to have a hangouts session with some people. that is extremely hard to find. i have seen other DIY kino flo setup but the person who posted the setup was  nowhere to be found. I just want to state my appreciation for the way you help your followers.  Thanks
Maxence Levaillant (4 years ago)
Thanks. Nice set up and to tw point explanation.
Sally Smith (4 years ago)
Thank you for the tutorial.  
Ahmed El-Alfy (4 years ago)
What do you think of placing another rack of lights placed below to light the chin? is it is necessary you think?
Martin Robson (4 years ago)
I visited my local Wickes here in the UK today and found that the T8's seem to come in various wattages - can you substitute say four 58 w bulbs for the six 36 w bulbs you originally suggested - also well done on the weight loss.
Martin Robson (4 years ago)
+Blaine Cooper Hi In the end I had to buy 8 twin 4ft T8 Fittings ( 36 watts ) - two lots of three fittings have been placed in rigid plastic Hydroponic trays - the tubes I bought were Compton T865 ( which I assume is 6500K ) - I have yet to try it all out as I only bought this a few days ago - they definitely throw out a fair amount of light - the 4 light system ( i.e equivalent to Joe system ) cost me about £350
videoviper1 (5 years ago)
Do you kill all of your house lights when shooting and just use the studio lights?
Ruby Red (5 years ago)
Amazing. You sir, are a godsend! Now I have a great plan for my basement studio!
Martin Stolzenberg (5 years ago)
Joe. I wanted to thank you for this tutorial. I was able to get all the parts except for the clamps of course, which is something of a problem but when I was getting cable at Home Depot, the associate had a lot of questions for me. There were so many types of cables to chose from, but I got just a basic black cable. After building it at home and testing it, I found the light to be rather weak with the 2 panel (4bulbs on each) system. Could there be something wrong with the output? Could  you specify what type of cable you are getting. Thank you!
Troy Volanti (5 years ago)
Thank you for the excellent tutorial!  
Daryl Nelms (5 years ago)
Hey Joe. thanks for the videos. They have been very helpful! I wanted to ask, are you using flash and if so, what are you using? Thanks
Joe Edelman (5 years ago)
Length of studio 26 feet. Distance of subject to backdrop can be 2" to 6 feet. Given today's cameras and how they handle higher ISO - the best I can say is probably - it depends on your needs and what your subject will be doing, etc... You would do well to schedule a Google Helpout with me. If you go to helpout.google.com - search for my name and follow the directions.
Ewen Lewis (5 years ago)
Thanks for the quick response time and advice! Two last questions: 1) Typically what is the distance from backdrop to lens for your shoots with this light set up (length of studio)? 2) In Canada, the Home Depot 6 bank light is 22 lbs. assembled. The 4 bank is 10 lbs. Will there be enough light with a 4 bank light set up? Thanks!
Joe Edelman (5 years ago)
Thank you so much Ewen! If you look close in this video you will notice that this shooting space is also in a basement and has an 8ft ceiling. The closet tracks are actually mounted where the heating ducts are so they are at approximately 7'. I do most of my shooting here with models. When I have bigger client projects I rent a warehouse space nearby.
Ewen Lewis (5 years ago)
Hey Joe. LOVE your videos and have learned so much from them. I am in the process of designing a home studio. I have a choice between basement or garage. I really like this quality of lighting and it would work in the basement, but the ceilings are restrictive at only 8 ft. high. My garage ceilings are much higher, but would not allow for the track system. Do you have any comments or suggestions? Thank you!
Joe Edelman (5 years ago)
Watch at 3:50 Kristal - I show the exact bulbs and packaging - they are Daylight Balanced.
Joe Edelman (5 years ago)
Absolutely. It is the equivalent of working with a medium sized soft box. I have shot full length shots with a medium sized soft box on many occasions - keep in mind though... the closer the soft box is to the subject - the faster the light will fall off - so for full length shots you will want to have the box further away from the subject.
wallacem76 (5 years ago)
Hey Joe, will this setup work for full body shots?
videojeff01 (5 years ago)
Wow! The idea to use these as light banks on light stands both vertically (and horizontally!) for video work is AWESOME!! Thank You Joe!
Joe Edelman (5 years ago)
Minimal. The main housing gets slightly warm to the touch but not hot. Unlike quartz or tungsten lights they do not become a heat source in the room.
Mark Payton (5 years ago)
Well done Joe! Just found you on Youtube......love everything about this setup! Thanks!!!
Joe Edelman (5 years ago)
Great tip Bryan! Thank you!
Alf Nielsen (5 years ago)
I need to do something similar in regards to rim lights... very nice :)
Joe Edelman (5 years ago)
Thanks! No flicker - even with video. The video was shot with the lights
photographerjonathan (5 years ago)
thanks for this video, your rock, I really love how you did this, so it doesn't even flicker when shooting video ???? I am in Thailand now, but I am going to have see if I can find the parts and pull off making a similar set up
Joe Edelman (5 years ago)
I am sorry to hear that Joseph - but respectfully - how do you expect me to help? I am sure that a trip to your local Wickes would help you to find a solution.
Joseph Borg (5 years ago)
Can I find these lithonia light fixtures in Uk? Home depot USA doesent seem to ship to Europe! pls help!
jjj (5 years ago)
dang as much work as this guy put in to this serious i feel bad if i didn't subscribe, this was freaking awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Pav Singh (5 years ago)
Joe, great video! I've been thinking about making something similar ever since I seen the Kinoflos and you nailed it! I'm off to Ace hardware. Just dropping you this note to say Thanks!
Joe Edelman (5 years ago)
Watch the Part II video in the series. Your question is a lazy one. Obviously I could shoot at ANY aperture depending on what ISO and shutter speed I select. There is information in Part II as well as on my blog that goes into more exposure details.
dopplerarts (5 years ago)
With this sort of lighting, what would be the workable fstop ranges?
Kris Hariharan (5 years ago)
Thanks a lot for the video. :)
AwesomeShot Studios (5 years ago)
Great video Joe. Clear, concise, helpful and well edited.
Eds drafts (5 years ago)
I have successfully build my own setup. I am using quad dual batten fixtures with 58w T8 bulbs. My biggest problem is I can't use speeds above 1/125sec and I am using electronic ballast. any ideas why is this happening? Huge banding with faster speeds. Color temperature 4000k 8 bulbs in total all 1m from subject.
Reed Sawyer (5 years ago)
I loved this video. I had gone into a camera store, and the lights that they were selling, plus tripods, were extremely expensive. By going to Home Depot, and using a little common sense, I was able to get great lighting, at a fraction of the camera store cost. I have used fluorescent lighting to dump more light in the area, and then used spots to put lights where I want it. This was a great video, Joe.
Edvinas M (5 years ago)
Would 2 or 3 double lamp fixtures be enough for filming or taking pictures at 1/100sec ISO 200 f/3.5 with subject being max 2 away from light source and or camera.
SakariNy (5 years ago)
There's special "dimmable" CFL lights that can be dimmed with traditional dimmer. Normal CFL lights just shut off at some point if you try to dim them. And of course, dimmable lights are more expensive and rare so it can be hard to find dimmable&daylight CFL's.
Eds drafts (5 years ago)
Would a few or more stacked diffusers suit the job?
gekko rules (5 years ago)
Dear Mr Edelman .. i can't find the right words to express to u none other than a big THANK YOU for sharing your idea of DIY studio lighting using florescent lights. It just happens that my wife is starting her online clothing biz and i am entrusted with the task of photographing the clothing line for uploading - with your kind sharing of this DIY setup, i should be able to have one decent setup ready in a few days .. THANK YOU Sir.
frogsoda (5 years ago)
You are a hero Joe. Great info without all the nonsense. I am glad I found this channel.
Joe Edelman (5 years ago)
Not that I am aware of - but I am definitely not an electrician. I dim them the old fashioned way... move them farther away from the subject :-)

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