Good things come in small packages sums up my little home studio to a tee. We recently moved house, and finding a place that had room for a dedicated studio, in a central location, that didn’t come with exorbitant rent was a challenge. Compromises had to be made, and to be honest, I had my doubts the back room in our new abode in Chermside would suffice.
I had in the back of my mind that I would need the recommended “ideal” minimum space, which is around 3 x 6 metres, a little smaller than the size of my previous home studio, which was a garage. My new space is quite a bit smaller at 2 x 3.4 metres.
Anyone who knows anything about portrait photography will understand that you need minimum 6 metres depth so you can use a longer focal length (85mm is perfect) to ensure people’s features aren’t distorted… but what about animals? I photograph animals in the studio almost exclusively using my 35mm lens. Up close. I generally only use my long zoom for outdoor sessions. So why was I beating myself up thinking the new smaller space wouldn’t work?!
In reality, the only change the new space meant is that I will only photograph animals in there, no people. Which is fine, as I recommend that pets are photographed with their people at home or outdoors anyway.
The more I thought about it, and as I started setting up my new space, the advantages became clearer:
- Sessions will be easier to manage, e.g. with the minimalist set up, there’s less places for animals to hide (kitties in particular) and less time spent coaxing the more timid subjects out of hidey holes;
- A smaller backdrop is easier to switch over and allows for quicker changes if required; and
- Since it is a dedicated space compared to multi-purpose (i.e. a garage that needed to be cleared out and set up for every session), it can be ready to go at short notice.
An easier to manage session, dedicated space, and only photographing animals, add up to getting much more done in less time, which in turn means I can now offer studio sessions at a lower price, which is great news for clients! You can view session pricing here.
To celebrate my new compact studio, I will be running a special promotion for studio sessions taking place from now until 31st May 2017, so keep an eye on your inbox/social media for more details. In the meantime, here’s some photos of my sweet little studio, and some test images of my less than enthusiastic pups taken today, demonstrating a few very different looks using the same space.
PS – If you have your heart set on being photographed with your pet studio-style, it is still possible if you have space at home for me to set up a portable studio (i.e. minimum 3m x 6m, the size of a garage).