I'm nuts. But if I didn't try it, I wouldn't be me. I'm one of those die-hard do-it-yourselfers. If I had the time to start a camera building venture I would, but the nights Adam is home are shorter with overtime and I'm looking for a project that may get me better images with the current kit I'm using now. As a Adam-will-be-on-vacation-for-10-days project I've decided to tackle a little continuous lighting problem. It gets dark really fast in the winter, and faster if you and your teething one-year-old daughter sleep in after a long night. Finding time to shoot using daylight is getting harder and harder. I've decided that this is the winter I'm going to mess about with artificial light. I'm not really wanting to invest a ton of money into a lighting setup at this point and so I've decided to do a bit on my own. I went to the local farm store (Shopper's Supply should be pretty familiar to other Iowans) and bought 10" metal worklights. You know...the ones that look like flash reflectors. $13 (or thereabouts) bought me 2. They can take up to 250 watts. If I use CFLs I can get some pretty good light out of 'em. I bought two 200 watt incandescent bulbs to start with, just so I can get an idea of what I'm in store for in use. There are two parts that get a little tricky, though. Controlling the light is one thing I'm wanting to explore. I planned on doing a series of images where lighting is very important to help me learn the ins and outs. I'm needing something that works well to diffuse the light that I can easily remove, and also something I can use to give an almost spot-light appearance. I'm trying to get hard and soft light out of these things. The diffusion idea I had was sanded plexiglass, but I'm not sure if that'll work. I'm looking for opinions. The spot problem is one I haven't thought of a solution for. I'm also wanting to put these on telescoping stands. I had an idea to just buy cheap tripods, but they can't go very high and most likely wouldn't give me the control I'm looking for. My idea was to nest pipe, such as PVC, and use clamps to keep it from moving once it's in the place I want it. Slower, but a cheap and effective solution. One thing I've been told is that PVC can be flimsy, so I'd be better off with a wider base pipe if I did it that way. I agree. Any other ideas on this would also be appreciated. Oh, and don't talk me out of it. I'm likely going to be stuck in the house cleaning for most of the time my boyfriend is off work, but I'm going to spend at least a couple hours a day working on this.