New Life for Your Old Light Table

February 11th, 2010 by Mike Moats

Dig out and dust off your old light table and put it to use as backlighting for macro subjects.  When I started in photography in 2001 I bought a few nature magazines and noticed all the pros were using Velvia slide film,  so I used slide film which required me to buy a light table to view the slides. 

 I only shot film for three years and then made the change to digital.  The light tables has been dark until I found a use for it.  It works great for backlighting which creates a special look to your images.  You need subjects that are somewhat transparent for the best results.

Above is a group of Beech leaves I arranged on the light table and below is a Turkey feather I found in my local park. I added a drop of water to the feather to add a little interest.




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2 Responses to “New Life for Your Old Light Table”

  1. Richard Haber says:


    I’ve started to use my flatbed scanner to do macro photography. There is a great chapter in Michael E. Stern’s book “Build a Better Photograph” about this. Here’s a test of what I did. Not great art yet, but a really fun start: Agate #7

  2. Mike Moats says:

    Hey Richard, yes a friend of mine that does the same art shows I do has some great images of gerbera dasies, leaves, and sea shells and sell the heck out of them. The agates also work well on the light tables as they are somewhat transparent. Yours agates look great from the scanner.

    Thanks for comment.

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