Building a Strobist Kit on a Budget
I have been following the strobist for around 2 months now. Naturally, I was also inclined to get a strobist kit for myself to get my photography to the next level. When I prepared my shopping list, to my amazement, I found little on my plate in New Delhi, India. The major setback was the speedlite itself. In Delhi you won’t find used Nikon or Canon flashguns that easy/cheap. I tried the e-bay India, OLX, Quikr (dont go to quikr it’s all spam no juice). Anyways I resolved to get a cheap strobist kit set up in Delhi in a minimal budget. Here is how I assembled it.
The basic lighting setup
- Flash Guns: I purchased a couple of new Sonia Flash guns(@ Rs 2100 a piece) at a total cost of Rs. 4200
These guns are pretty good for a people on low budget (atleast for me). It has variable power output which can be adjusted manually (from 1/1 full power to 1/128th of power). You neither get a zoom/ focal length adjustments on the flash and nor can you adjust the flash power in 1/3rd of stops. But you get what you pay for. It has an inbuilt optical slave which is pretty handy.
- Light Stands: I purchased 2 cheap light stands at Rs. 500 a piece (total cost Rs 1000). These light stands are Sonia Light stands with springs inside them for safety of the speedlights mounted on them.
- Swivel hotshoe cum umbrella mount @ Rs. 280 (a total of Rs. 560)
- Two shoot through umbrellas (they call it jumbo umbrella here in Delhi) @ Rs. 280. You can have small umbrellas as well for Rs. 100 a piece.(a total of Rs. 560)
So here you have a mini studio with a two light set up at a total cost of Rs. 6320/- Pretty cheap eh??
Now getting into really expensive stuff
- Color Correction Gels: You won’t find these in the camera market. The best I found (at Madanjee in chandni Chowk Delhi) was one 8″x8″ sheet for Rs. 100 which was a little too expensive.
These gels are called Lee filters here in Delhi. the shopkeepers won’t understand the term “Gel”. I spent a couple of days on the internet to find A. K. Electricals in Meharchand Market behind India Habitat Center for Rs. 30 for a 8×8 sheet (you have to buy 6 of them together). Buy CTO and CTB gels and window Green or any number as per your photography requirement. I purchased around 15 different gels both the color correction gels and color effects gels.
- Light Modifiers: I have made snoots of different sizes. I have also made some DIY softboxes and planning to get a home made beauty dish and reflectors. I shall soon be posting the updates on the same.
- The snoot grid: This was a challenge. At the strobist it was made of choroplast which I was not able to find in here in Delhi. After lot of research I came to know that choroplast is called Sunpak in Delhi. You can purchase a 8’x4′ 3mm for Rs. 150 + Rs. 10 as cutting charges.
- Gaffers tape: For Rs. 650 you can purchase it from A.K Electricals as mentioned above. You won’t get gaffers tape in Delhi elsewhere.
So here you have it. A cheap strobist kit in Delhi. Do the math and believe me it is cheap. Go ahead and practice with it. I shall soon be posting my pictures using my kit.