The Artists Toolbox: Photography Studios
|8 min read
Kaz-D's avatar
By Kaz-D   |   Watch
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Published: May 6, 2013



Hearing the word studio makes me think of expensive rooms with top of the range equipment, fantastic lighting and only professional awesome photographers inside of it. In reality however, you can create a Photography studio for just about any type of Photography and it doesn't have to cost very much.

The Macro Studio


Macro Photography can be undertaken pretty much anywhere, but sometimes you just want to shoot something in a neutral environment with a plain, unobtrusive backdrop. Many photographers shy away from doing this because they think it's too complicated - actually you would be doing yourself a favour if you did try it, it can really help improve your work.

For starters, you don't even have to have expensive flash. You could use any lamp that you can easily move around, to give a bit of light into your mini studio. You also need a couple of sheets of card or paper, and a cardboard box. The sizing is completely up to you and up to the size of the objects that you want to shoot. You're basically making a light box, cheaply. For more information on creating a simple macro studio check out Strobist.



The Baby or Portrait Session Studio

 
I'm sure I've shared my studio process before, but here it is again for those that missed out on it. I created my own studio kit spending a little under £40. I bought laminate flooring from my local DIY store which was on offer, and easy to transport being in seperate strips. I hung out on Ebay until I could poach a really cheap studio lighting kit from an unsuspecting bidder, I grabbed the backdrop frame for under £14 on Ebay too and I picked up the material from a local fabric shop. In fact the material was one of the most expensive bits of the whole kit.


Day 305: Baby Photoshoot by Kaz-D

The most important thing when thinking about building up your own studio, is to concentrate on using it. Don't worry yourself with props, don't even worry yourself with flooring as it's likely your customer or subject might have access to a good floor. Concern yourself only with the lighting (and getting a good iron to get rid of those creases!) This kind of studio set up is big enough for the parents to sneak in and be in shot when needed, but small enough that the baby doesn't look too swamped.

Photographing Crafts


Crafts, food, small items, even stuff you plan to sell on Ebay - a small macro style studio is perfect for making sure you get the best out of a shot. You don't have to buy the official items to ensure that you're setting yourself up for success. Remember that it takes a very special kind of Photographer to be able to afford, maintain and manage their own 'shop' studio. Most of us will never get to that stage, most of us don't even want to. So having something portable will take you to your customers and your subjects - which is, in the long run, what most people want. Make yourself mobile and you'll have access to a wealth of opportunities.

Hit the online photography forums for more tips and hints to creating your own studio. Check out this thread which talks about homemade lighting and this site which looks at a larger homemade studio. Also if you've got your own studio set up, share it with me and I'll pop it in this article! The more knowledge and experience the better.

Comments13
anonymous's avatar
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Saknika's avatar
SaknikaProfessional Photographer
Nothing holds a candle to a good window and lots of wonderful natural light though! North-facing windows seem to produce the best light for this as well. A simple piece of white foam-core to bounce the light and voila, cheapest setup ever. (I'll try to make a better tutorial if it interests you).

But yes, these are all inexpensive options to the studio, which I used prior to getting my professional stuff as part of my educational expenses. Sometimes, I miss the simpler days.
Kaz-D's avatar
Kaz-DHobbyist Photographer
I love using natural light, it's such an amazing gift :D
That would be a great idea for a tutorial :nod:
jumparoundjon's avatar
jumparoundjon Photographer
Thanks for the article... :nod:
Kaz-D's avatar
Kaz-DHobbyist Photographer
Welcome!
MarcosRodriguez's avatar
MarcosRodriguezHobbyist Photographer
Nice article, these tips might help a lot. Thanks!!
Kaz-D's avatar
Kaz-DHobbyist Photographer
You're welcome!
Astrikos's avatar
AstrikosHobbyist Artist
:la:
Kaz-D's avatar
Kaz-DHobbyist Photographer
:D
Kaz-D's avatar
Kaz-DHobbyist Photographer
:D
Lintu47's avatar
Lintu47Hobbyist Photographer
    :clap: :love:
vanmall's avatar
vanmallHobbyist Digital Artist
:clap:
Kaz-D's avatar
Kaz-DHobbyist Photographer
:)
Talty's avatar
Talty Artisan Crafter
Great stuff :) When I began I thought I needed a fancy setting to take good photos of crafts, one day I just put something like you mentioned together and it served me well for a couple of years XD and it was free!
anonymous's avatar
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