Light wands are great for a lot of reasons. They're lightweight, portable, and come in handy when you need to add a little extra light without a whole lot of fuss. However, units like the Westcott Ice Light are crazy expensive at $500, so many indie filmmakers aren't able to take advantage of their great dexterity—unless, of course, you're up for a little DIY project. With just $45 worth of materials, this tutorial from Macroscope Pictures shows you how to build your own light wand that has all the features you'd hope to see in a conventional unit, including the ability to change colors and Wi-Fi capability.

Yes, this is a bit more labor intensive than many of the tutorials we share here, but the result is worth it. Check out the material list courtesy of DIY Photography:

  • A saw or a PVC cutter
  • Metallic file
  • Wrenches
  • PVC or multi-purpose adhesive
  • PVC pipe – 1/2’’ x 4’
  • PVC pipe – 1.5’ x 2’
  • PVC bushing 1.5’’ to 1/2’’
  • PVC Couplers 2 x 1.5’’
  • Threaded PVC bushing 1.5’’ to 1/2’’
  • PVC cap 0.5’’
  • 1/2’’ x 1/8’’ hex bushing
  • a 3/8’’ to 1/4’’ 20 adapter (optional)
  • Waterproof RGB 5050 LED strip (5m/15ft/300 LEDs)
  • AA battery housing
  • 9V battery clip 5.5mm x 21mm male DC barrel plug
  • Foam/sponge/paper
  • Tape
  • WiFi Wireless LED Smart Controller (optional)


If you're not much of a DIY person, you're not doomed to pay half a grand for a light wand. Yongnuo's popular YN360 light wand is the dirt cheap answer to Westcott's Ice Light, and for about $80 you can pick one up. However, if you are a DIY person who wants to pay half that for your handheld lighting unit, head on over to DIY Photography to get more information about Macroscope Pictures' build.

Source: Macroscope Pictures