Tuesday, May 20, 2008
I made a light box (with help)
My buddy Daniel was wanting to make a light box for his girlfriend since she's quite the artist, but has until now lacked the ability to properly back light her drawings as she makes them. I'm not much of an artist in that regard so I'm not familiar with how back lighting helps one draw but apparently it does. So Daniel and I decided to make her a light box.
We roved the local Lowes for some materials: an oak 1x2, a sheet of thin plywood, a sheet of clear plexiglass, some hinges, and some small LED tap lights and small fluorescent lights from wally-world next door.
Though we were both very tired we managed to cut the wood and paint the clear plastic with a frosting spray to help diffuse the light, and assemble it all into a working (if dim) light box. He presented it to her the next day and she was very happy with it, but since we were tired while making it there were some rough edges and the spray on the top panel was somewhat splotchy. I picked up the light box about a week later and use an extra sheet of plexi we'd gotten and sprayed it on a flat concrete surface since the fact that the first sheet was sitting on top of a milk crate somehow left the impression of a milk crate as the spray dried, possibly due to heat differences in the sheet. I also sanded and stained the box, as well as putting some rubber feet on it.
I then went about making some more powerful lights. A while ago I used the driver board from a burnt out CFL bulb to power a normal fluorescent tube, and was quite pleased with how well it worked, so I'd been saving any CFLs that had burnt out around the house as well as a few tubes that I'd had for a while. I put two tubes together and hot glued them into the box; it was much better lit now, even though one tube was more purple than the othter X(.
In any event, the light box works well and looks good now, and though I'm not sure what the use of it is, I am sure there is one and it appears that Daniel's artistic girlfriend is getting use from this box with lights they call a light box.