How To Make A Light Reflector In 1 Minute Flat

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Murphy’s Law: You will have troubles with your Furnace during a cold-snap.

Thank goodness for space heaters!

Our heat has been wonky last night and this morning and the house feels like an icy igloo. I woke up this morning feeling like I’m coming down with a cold too. My poor body is just trying to stay alive!

Right now, I have my space heater so close to me, I could melt, but I am willing to take that risk. Hopefully the technician will be able to make it today.

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Of course, all I could think about this morning was getting WARM and it was the perfect morning for a hot bowl of oats that would warm me from the inside out.

Aside from making Rustic Banana Cake, another easy way to use up black bananas is by mashing them into oatmeal for a lovely Banana Bread effect. A really ripe banana makes for a sweet bowl of oats too, so I didn’t need any additional sweetener in this bowl which is always nice!

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A reader sent me some PB2 to try out a while ago so I thought I would try stirring some into my oatmeal this morning. PB2 is basically powdered, defatted peanut butter with 85% less fat than traditional peanut butter. They also add in some sugar and salt to pump up the flavour. I have to admit, it does taste better than I thought it would, though, I still prefer using real peanut butter in moderation, extra calories and all. wlEmoticon devil   How To Make A Light Reflector In 1 Minute Flat

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Eric surprised me with some organic strawberries the other day. We normally don’t buy the non-local berries in the Winter, but once and a while they are a nice treat. This pint was really flavourful for some reason.

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After cooking the oats, stir in the toppings of your choice…

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Oh, and try to avoid doing this…

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[I blame my frozen, lifeless fingers…]

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I added a splash of Almond Milk to my bowl. I really enjoy a bit of milk poured on top of my oats lately.

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How To Make A Light Reflector In 1 Minute Flat

The main way I have learned more about food photography is by using online tutorials and then practicing these tips in my shoots. I thought it would be fun to occasionally share with you the tips and tricks that I learn along the way.

The other day I came across this easy tip on how to build a light reflector. Light reflectors are often used in photography to bounce the light and brighten up your shot. I’ll show you a before and after below.

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Step 1) Grab a Binder

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Step 2: Cover it with tin foil.

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Step 3) Secure with tape.

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A benefit of using a binder is that you can bend it forwards and backwards.

Before (not using light reflector)                                

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After (using light reflector)

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The difference is very subtle, but you can see how it brightens up and fills out some of the dark areas in the after shot!

Just try not to get the binder in your shot… ;)

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My next tip has to do with using props in a photo. I have some fun progress pictures to show you from my first experiment.

You might also want to check out my ‘how to make a light box’ post from the other week.

I think more hot tea is in order. :)

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{ 86 comments… read them below or add one }

Chelsey (Cookteen) February 10, 2011

a light reflector is such a good idea–sometimes I try to balance my camera while holding up a white paper towel to reflect light, doesn’t work too well :)

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Angela (Oh She Glows) February 10, 2011

haha I just got the most hilarious visual of that. Ive tried using a white styrofoam board and it was a huge hassle and always fell.

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Anni February 10, 2011

Hello :)

I like your recipes and journal entries so much. Thank you for posting, Angela. You are a real inspiration. And the reflector is awesome!

I send you my best wishes from Hamburg (North-Germany).

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Angela (Oh She Glows) February 10, 2011

Thanks Annie :) So fun to know I have a reader from Hamburg!

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Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg February 10, 2011

Yikes– I hope your heat comes back on!!!! Bundle up!!

I can definitely tell a difference– cool trick!!

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Blog is the New Black February 10, 2011

Gorgeous pics and great tip on the light reflector!

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Ann February 10, 2011

There have been many days this winter (most days…) when I’m so cold that I drink tea continuously partly to hold a hot cup! Thanks for the light reflector tips, I might have to try that. I’ve only been blogging for a few weeks, but I’m learning a lot about which rooms in my house get good natural photography light. Are you just using the light reflector near natural light, or are you using it with artificial light, too?

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Angela (Oh She Glows) February 10, 2011

I only use it when in natural light :) Sometimes I get a lot of shadows depending on the time of day and whether it is cloudy outside or sunny, so it can help bounce some light around.

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Katelyn @ Chef Katelyn February 10, 2011

My furnace was broken last night too! The technician came at 12:30 in the morning, a little too late but at least we weren’t cold anymore:)

And duh, why did I not think of that?! Now I can make a speedy light reflector!

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Alex @ Healing Beauty February 10, 2011

Breakfast sounds delicious! Strawberries pretty much go with anything in my opinion :)

Thanks for the tips on the light reflector! Oh and by the way, yesterday I was at costco and found some of that marinara sauce you posted about the other day. I can’t wait to try it with spelt elbow pasta and some nutritional yeast on top in a baby le creuset look-alike I bought!!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) February 10, 2011

I was thinking it would go lovely with some nutritional yeast. Enjoy!

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Shanna February 10, 2011

Brilliant quick tip! I should really do this. Our lighting in our home is terrible. All overhead at weird angles that cast shadows.

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Sabine @ thefruitpursuit February 10, 2011

wow such a great and useful tip!

our heating has been super wonky as well haha but we live in a huge old mansion haha (temporarily)

be glad it was just nuts! I once splattered pumpkin ALL over my kitchen! oops…

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Jackie @ Baking Charms February 10, 2011

What a great trick! Thanks for sharing :)

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Rochel @ barefootandcooking February 10, 2011

Thanks for the tip. I’m going to go try it now.

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Moni'sMeals February 10, 2011

thanks for the tips! One day I will need this!

I really just want your breakfast…look at those strawberries!

I drop something on the floor at least once a day. :)

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Jenny (Fit Girl Foodie) February 10, 2011

I love your strawberry/pb oats! Is there any reason why you add the chia seeds other than for nutritional value? Not sure if they add any different texture to the oats or if flax would be the same. :)

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carri z. February 10, 2011

hey jenny!

i have never used flax in oatmeal,
but i do use and love chia seeds.
they seem to really fluff up
and bulk up the oats and add
a cool texture but no weird taste.

very VERY yum,
especially with a banana and pb
whipped in!

; )

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Katy (The Singing Runner) February 10, 2011

I made a light box and it has really helped with my photos, especially on those non-sunny days. Now I’ll have to make a light reflector! :D

Breakfast looks amazing! I love my oats with a splash of milk too! :D

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Lisa February 10, 2011

Yum! I want those oats now! I am in desperate need of more PB 2!

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Jenn L @ Peas and Crayons February 10, 2011

Thank you angela!!!! This is awesome! <3 Do you use the binder with natural light, a lamp, or in a light box? I'm super curious!

xoXOxo
Jenn @ Peas & Crayons

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Heather (heathers dish) February 10, 2011

What a sweet idea! Off to find a binder now ;)

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Roz February 10, 2011

Thanks so much for the light reflector tip. It IS subtle, but the difference is impressive.
Have a great day, keep warm.

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Nikki T February 10, 2011

Brrr….and I thought it was bad when my hot water heater crapped out on me the other week, nevermind the furnace!
I hope that repair guy gets to you before you turn frosty on us!
Stay warm :)

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Nichole February 10, 2011

Those warm oats look delicious!!!!

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Bronwyn February 10, 2011

I love photography tips! And I really must build myself a light box. I would love to take more pictures of my dinner meals, but lighting is horrible in my apartment.

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Jennifer @ keepitsimplefoods.com February 10, 2011

Great photo tips! Love that it’s easy to do and doesn’t take up a ton of space. Thanks for sharing.

The strawberries brightened up my day!

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Freya February 10, 2011

Those strawberries look amazing! So crisp and clear in the photography, clearly well-light for their big moment of glory ;)

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Ashley February 10, 2011

Don’t freeze to death Angela! We need you for photographic inspiration and delicious vegan treats!

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Madeleine @ Stepping to the Bright Side February 10, 2011

Aluminum foil is such a great idea! I’ve used a white paper towel to bounce off light in a pinch…

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Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table February 10, 2011

Reading the title of this post, I totally thought it was going to be able Star Wars! ;)

I really appreciate the photo-taking tips. They are certainly much-needed.

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Christine (The Raw Project) February 10, 2011

Yikes, sorry about your heat – thank goodness for space heaters indeed! The Strawberry oats look wonderful. Love the light reflector tutorial, thanks!

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Doc (The Healthy PhD) February 10, 2011

Stupid furnaces! I feel your pain.

Plus, I love, love, love your strawberry slice heart. So cute!

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Leanne (For Health's Sake) February 10, 2011

What a good idea!

You’re the martha stewart of blogs ha! :)

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lindsay February 10, 2011

I love all your photo tutorials! Keep it up lovely!
LC

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Gen February 10, 2011

Awesome idea!!!!
By the way, those oats look wonderful! Where do you come up with all of these fabulous recipes? =D

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Julie February 10, 2011

OH. MY. GOSH. I NEED to make this oatmeal! It looks so delicious and your pictures are always so beautiful.

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Holly @ Couch Potato Athlete February 10, 2011

I love the light reflector tip — how hilarious!

Those strawberries are gorgeous!!!

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Melomeals: Vegan for $3.33 a Day February 10, 2011

Light reflectors make such a difference… great tutorial!

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Meryl @ scribbled musings February 10, 2011

Thanks for all the quick and easy tips.

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Maryea {Happy Healthy Mama} February 10, 2011

I’m going to go have some tea for you…brrr!

Thanks for the light reflector tip.

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Felicia (a taste of health with balance) February 10, 2011

i have my eye out for organic strawberries.. this bowl of oats looks so good. i love the colors and the nuts always add the perfect crunch and texture. never had PB2.. only peanut flour from trader joes.. but i agree, nothing tastes better than the real thing!

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Kath (My Funny Little Life) February 10, 2011

Thank you for these wonderful tips! I have the problem that the light in my kitchen is rather dark which makes it difficult to take photos in the evening. I’ll try this out! It’s amazing how much you can do yourself so you don’t have to buy professional equipment for everything.

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chelsey @ clean eating chelsey February 10, 2011

Thanks for the light reflector tip! I’ll have to use it!

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felicia February 10, 2011

Breakfast looks yummy! Great tip about the light reflector.

Hope your heat gets fixed soon!

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