Today, we are checking out what has become an essential accessory in our mobile photography lighting kit. We’re going to show you how to turn a painter’s pole into a DIY photography monopod for your lights and we’ll shoot some pics with it down at the beach!

The Secret of the Painter’s Pole

In the past, we’ve struggled a bit with bringing our lights for photography or video on location while being able to move around quickly. The wind combined with a small crew and too few sandbags normally prevented us from bringing the additional lighting we wanted.

Recently, we came across another photographer who swore by this painter’s pole and a small baby pin adapter that fits right on the end. It’s a really simple way to add some light on set while working outside. The pole itself extends up to 9 feet and it is light enough that you can hand hold it above your head. But, more importantly, you can rest it on the ground to take a little break if needed! 

DIY Photography Monopod - In Use - Review - Tutorial
This DIY photography monopod is simple to use and easy to grab for quick shots

DIY Photography Monopod: Secret Ingredients

Painter’s Pole – $33 – Shur-Line 6572L Easy Reach Adjustable Extension Pole, 4-Feet to 9-Feet

Adapter to 5/8 Baby Pin – $25 – Kacey Enterprises Kacey Pole Adapter, 5/8 Baby Pin on Top/Standard Extension Pole Threads on Bottom

Remember the key to this setup is the 5/8 baby pin to extension adapter. That adapter is what enables you to attach your lights. Without it you just got a regular ol’ painter’s pole, kid!

DIY Photography Monopod - Adaptor
The most important piece to this entire DIY: the 5/8 baby pin to extension adapter!

There are a lot of options out there for monopods, but nothing seems to work as well as this DIY for us. Even after we ended up spending hundreds on some different monopods and stands! This little setup is about $50 and it’s actually more sturdy than most of the monopods costing much more. We enjoy good gear, but sometimes DIY photography tips can end up being great low budget options.

The DIY Monopod in Action!

We got some shots on Gandy Beach a few minutes from our St. Petersburg photo studio, so you could see how the set up looks!

DIY Monopod - Photography - Beach - Water
The monopod can even be used to safely hold lights in places you might not want your fancy stand to go!

Here’s a couple photos from the shoot with the DIY photography monopod. We shot all the pics on the Canon EOS R camera and mostly used the Canon 85mm 1.2 L lens and the Canon 50mm 1.2 L lens. Our lighting was one Profoto B1X strobe which is a nice battery powered strobe option that you can take on location. We used a Profoto 2×3′ Softbox and a Profoto Beauty Dish as our lighting modifiers.

DIY Photography Monopod - Final Product - Review Tutorial
We used a single strobe on our DIY monopod (along with a nice sunset) to create this image.
DIY Photography Monopod Canon EOS R Photgraphy
After the sun had gone down, we could still used the Profoto B1X Stobe on our DIY photography monopod as a key light.

DIY Photography Tips

When you’re shooting it’s always great to have an assistant to hold the pole light, but in a pinch you can even operate it while shooting solo. It’s definitely better if you have help, but it is an option if you’re feelin’ frisky! 

If you want to see some more affordable DIY filmmaking tips, check out 3 Point Video: Lighting Kit Under $10.

Well that’s it for this episode of Film Jams! Leave a comment and let us know what you think of this DIY photography monopod set up!

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-Shur-Line 6572L Painter’s Pole –

-EVO Gimbals Pole Adapter –


-Canon EOS R –


-Canon 50mm Lens –

-Canon 85mm Lens –


-Profoto B1X –

-Profoto 2×3’ Softbox –

Other equipment we use to film:


-Canon C200 –

-Canon C100 – (for BTS Video)

-Sony A7III – (for BTS Video)


-Canon 24-105mm – (main interview)

-100mm macro Canon Lens- (product shots & CUs)

-Canon 135mm Lens:


-Sachtler –


-Sennheiser MKE600 –

-Sennheiser 416 –


-Litepanel Astra 6x –

-Kino Flo Diva LED –


-Profoto D2 500 Strobe Kit –

-Profoto Beauty Dish –

-Canon 5D mkIII –

-Profoto Air Remote –

Filmed on location at: in St. Petersburg, FL and at Gandy Beach.

Special Thanks to the St. Petersburg Clearwater Film Commission Digital Creator Program.

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