Lots of people own a light box because it helps them with things like calligraphy and artwork. Some people build their own light boxes, rather than pay exorbitant costs for them, but even building one can run into quite a bit of money. You have to have wood, and a light source, and nails or screws, and brackets – it’s way too much. You don’t have to spend that kind of money and effort on a light box when you can make one in a minute. And, after you make it you can use it to create fabulous t-shirts with any images you want.
Look at a discount department store and you’ll find plenty of snap-tight, plastic cases. Some people use them to hold baseball or other cards, and some people use them to hold nails, and still others store beads or craft supplies in them. Buy a snap-tight box – a clear plastic one – and use it to make the light box. The best plastic box to buy is one that has no compartments.
A tap light is a great source of light for the box. A tap light has a flat, round, plastic bottom, with a plastic dome on top of it, and runs off of batteries. All you do is push down on the dome and the light comes on; push it again and the light goes off. The tap light works great but you could actually use most any battery-operated light, which fits in the snap-tight box, and provides enough light to shine through a t-shirt.
At home, just unsnap the plastic box, put the tap light – or other light – in it, then snap the clear box shut. Use it to make most any image on a t-shirt. Print a paper with the image on it – from the internet or your own photos – and lay it on the light box. Or, just tear a picture from a magazine or other source. Tape the paper to the top of the box so that the light shines through it.
Lay the chosen t-shirt on the light box so that you can see the image on the front. The light will shine through the box, and the paper image, and through the shirt. This makes it easy to see the image on the front of the shirt as you draw.
It’s very helpful to tape the shirt to the light box so it won’t move as you draw on it. Use permanent markers to outline the image you have on the shirt. After the outline is done, you’ll likely find it easiest to fill in the outline with the light turned off.
You’ll love making shirts with images of famous people, drawings of famous landmarks, or just shirts with images of family, friends, and pets on them. This is the easiest light box and one of the most simple t-shirt painting techniques there ever was.