Sunday, February 05, 2012


In an attempt to shore up my sorry cartooning skills and upgrade from using nothing more than paper, markers and a scanner (and of course, MS Powerpoint), I did a Google search for cartoonist tools to see what I was missing out on.

Among them was a lightbox. A device on which you place your paper and draw, which makes sketching a lot easier (think layers from Photoshop if you're of that clan). In essence, it's nothing more than a box with light coming out of it.

Cost: $199.99. You've got to be freakin' kidding me.

Which is when I decided to do a little rummaging, pay the electrical store a quick visit and come up with my own solution.

Materials needed: Plastic paper box, 1 small CFL, bulb holder and wire to a plug.

Place CFL in box like suchly.

Close box like thusly. Try not to snip the wire, that will render things a little useless.

Voila! Sketch heaven!

Total cost: INR 525. #winning.

This man, the king of jugaad, would be proud.



Prats said...

Well I used such a device to copy my engineering drawing sheets. I used an empty bucket, placing a table lamp in it and covering the mouth with a glass pane... The thing works absolutely awesome. Kudos to your device and many brilliant sketches to come out of it.

Ps. if You have a tablet you can change the background color to white and then keep sheets over it expensive but works as well and easier to carry and no wires

NotFunnyNotFamous said...

Reminds me of the endless engineering drawing contraptions. But how did this jugaad cost 525 bucks?

Deepak Gopalakrishnan said...

@Prats: Thanks, man :) Tablet is the obvious expensive option.

@Tantanoo: The box, believe it or not, was 200 bucks. CFL cost another 200, and everything else put together came to around 100ish. Auto to and from electrician 25.

bottleHeD said...

Fantastic idea! Except, at some point over prolonged use, won't the box get too hot to use / start melting?

Deepak Gopalakrishnan said...

Not really. I stopped using it though, mainly because I bought a Wacom drawing tablet. But till then, this served me well.

I used a CFL for lighting, which doesn't emit too much heat. Not enough to melt a solid plastic box anyway!