How To Build Your Own Ambient Stage Lights

I don't want to discount how useful it is to grab deals on professional LED lights, but if you are looking for a cheap solution just to "fill out" your stage lighting selection, then this is a really good option for you, especially if you get a thrill out of making things with your hands.

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Materials You Will Need

Here is a short list of materials you need for your lighting. Lots of these things are optional if you can find a suitable replacement (don't want to actually buy a light fixture? Steal one out of an old lamp!)

The key here is you want to get the cheapest materials possible.

The Light Fixture Screwed To The Inside Of The Paint Can

Now I've done my best to give recommendations in the video for where to get cheap supplies. For example: choosing a paint store, rather than a general hardware store can save you 300% of your cost on the paint can.

How the light fixture looks on the inside.

When I went to get my paint cans from the "General Hardware Store" they tried to charge me $5 for a silly paint can. The painters store sold me the same can for $1.25 CAD.

  • 1 Gallon Paint Can ($1.25)
  • Power Cord ($2.00 OR Free if you rip one off an old appliance). 1 end will be bare wires, the other end will be a plug that can go into the wall.
  • Power Drill (To Drill Holes in the Paint Can)
  • Drill Bits (Experiment with the size)
  • Light Fixture ($5.00 | Choose between a used house fixture, or the new one)

The Light Fixture

  • Colored 65 Watt Flood Light ($3.99)
  • Mechanics Wire/Zap Straps (Practically Free)
  • Black Spray Paint ($5.00 or less for all cans)
  • Optional: Flicker Switch ($5.00)

Now a lot of these things you might just have lying around, but I listed them anyways.

It's pretty likely you will have a can of black spray paint in your garage, pretty much eliminating that cost entirely.

Building It!

The main order of the events here is:

  • Spray the paint cans black
  • Drill a hole at the base of the paint can for the power cable. Install the power cable and connect the bare wires to the light fixture for power.
  • Install Light fixture in can. If using the house pot lights, drill the 3 holes at the top of the can and Zap strap them in. You will need tiny zap straps.
  • Insert flood light into the fixture.
  • Plug it into the wall and light it up!

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About The Writer

My name is Andrew Muller. I love creative art, music, television shows, movies, video games, and a good story.

If you had to find me somewhere, you would probably find me down at O'neils home cooking eating an organic sweet-potato bun breakfast sandwich with ham.

Among my friends, it's a "Muller Classic Move" to eat Mcdonald's at 2am because it's cheap and open 24/7. The joke here is that I'm an idiot. 

I play drums, guitar, piano, and I write & perform music for My Goal Is Telepathy. Take a listen to the latest sound here.