You don’t need expensive, professional photography gear to take stunning pictures. All it takes is a little time and patience to produce these camera hacks. At a fraction of the cost, these photography tips produce stunning results. Ready to get your hands dirty? Here are the DYI hacks that will help you achieve similar results normally achieved with advanced photography kits.
To help you become a better photographer, Cowapunga has assembled the Top 10 Genius Camera Hacks that have been tested by real photographers and are proven to work. Whether you want to soften a pop-up flash or transform a 50mm lens into a macro lens, these simple and genius camera tricks will take your photos to the next level.
Continue scrolling to learn the DIY hacks and rate your favorites!
#1 Use Tinfoil To Create A Wall Of Bokeh
It doesn’t take much to create a beautiful bokeh effect. All you will need is some tinfoil, a mirror and tape. Divide the tin foil into long strips, crinkle it up and roll it back out, taping the strips vertically along a level surface. Now you have your backdrop. Place your subject in front of the tin foil strips, make sure you have sufficient lighting, and start shooting.
#2 Use Windows For A Softening Effect
Put your subject behind a clear glass door or large window. The subject should be about 12 inches (30 centimeters) from the glass. Sunlight and a little reflection will help create that softening effect when focusing and zooming in on your subject.
#3 Cut Different Shapes In Cardboard For A Window Shadow
Get some poster paper or medium to heavy grammage stock paper and cut out different shapes. Experiment with lines, rectangles, squares, and arches. Imagination is the limit! It helps to have an assistant that will hold up the cut sheets near the light source.
#4 Use Your Sunglasses As A Filter
This is a no-brainer. Almost too simple. Take off those shades. Risk looking a little less cool for 30 seconds, and snap that photo.
#5 Use A Sandwich Bag To Create Hazy Photos
Rip open the bottom of your sandwich back and scrunch it up around your lens making sure to leave a little overlap around the outer corners of your lens.
#6 Get That Perfect Top-Down Photo For Your Instagram
This wins our most genius tip. So simple yet effective. Get a rectangle of cardboard. Fold in four equal parts then tap the outer flaps to the ceiling. We recommend using masking tape or washi tape so you don’t rip the paint off your walls.
#7 Mimic Film Burn With A Matchstick
Attention! This is not for a suggested technique for pyros (or if you are shooting outside in a drought-ridden outback). Strike a match and carefully hold it off to the side, about 3 inches from your lens.
#8 Use A Plastic Bag For A Softbox Effect
Glaring flash is never a good look on anyone. To achieve a softbox effect, grab a white plastic bag, fill it up with air and tie it tight like you would a balloon. Place the inflated white bag over your lens flash and, voila!
#9 Instant Fake Macro Bokeh
This fake macro bokeh effect literally takes 1 minute. Find a macro bokeh effect on your desktop computer screen and place your subject in front of it. Done.
#10 Use Torches To Add Lens Flare
Grab a mini flashlight and shine the light at an angle towards the outer edge of our camera lens. You will get a soft lens flare and subtle filtered light effect in your photo.