Your Shooting Space…When starting out shooting products, one of the biggest physical and mental hurdles we can have, is to work out how to get started.
This article is the starting point that you need to think how to approach getting a shooting space that works for you. It links with my teaching within the course that we do not need a big studio or loads of kit to be a product photographer. Nothing is easy, I know, but when approached logically with a problem solving mindset we can get great results.
Enjoy the video!
Don’t have the time, or cannot watch the video? Here’s the transcript…
Make Your Shooting Space your own…It is Possible!
I’m making a massive assumption here, that you have a passion and real interest in shooting products and want to know more about how you can maximise your set up and situation.
I’ve come to understand that when talking about a shooting space, I must be very aware of the different requirements you may have. Since launching my course, I have learnt that some of the biggest challenges facing product photographers who are not professional is where are you going to shoot, and how do you physically do it!
When thinking about setting up, I know we can so easily fall into worrying about the physical stuff – what kit we have. This can then lead the mind into a bit of a panic where we can put some big mental walls up by telling ourselves we are not ready yet…
I get it, this is a natural journey of the mind, however we need to understand that this does not have to become reason to wait.
You can start shooting your own photography and create your own shooting space with very little. In all my course teachings and in related articles to this Vlog, I do go to great lengths to make sure you understand that you do not have to have a big studio, and lots of kit to get results that you want to achieve.
Let’s list out a few things that you can be mindful of when thinking about your shooting space:
- Be clear from the start about what it is you want to shoot. Just even knowing the likely size of your products and objects could be really helpful.
- Yes of course, for your own ease and comfort and to give you flexibility, you do want to work in the largest space available. Thinking about the kind of room size I could work in, a fairly large spare room sized space is perfect, say 12 ft long, 10 ft wide and 9 ft high.
From talking to forum members, this can be the big sticking point. I am aware that small box rooms of 8ft by 6ft or even 6ft square are common sized shooting spaces. I am not going to say this size of room will make shooting easy, however product photography is still very much possible. So don’t despair!
- If you are using a spare room in the house, what space saving opportunities are there? For instance, can you get a bed against the wall, leaving the room empty most of the time? Can you also get drawers on wheels that you can move out when you want to shoot. You do want to have a clear empty space to work in. Take down any big lampshades and if you can put spots in the ceiling giving you your height back.
- Think about where the subject sits in that space. Try and minimise the size of the support. Think about using things like apple boxes or stackable crates. A work mate bench is ok as well. Try and minimise the width of your surfaces. You need to have as much room around the set as possible.
- I think the most simple and effective way of adding value to a small space that will help your lighting and give you ways of adapting your space is to paint it white! When I think about many different lighting set ups, using white walls and ceilings to light with or use as a background can be a massive space saving approach. We talk about lighting options in Shoot Products Like A Pro, and using walls and ceilings, if close into a set, can be a major plus point. It can save you having to buy large soft boxes and boom stands.
- Do you have a window in the room? This may be something you can use in your photography, making shooting with daylight an option for you. We already have an article about lighting types that starts looking at this as a lovely natural way of getting started.
- Small spaces can be made dark by simple black out roller blinds and drops of velvet easily bought online, that are hung from hooks in corners of rooms.
- Keep your kit tidied away in bags and cases with handles to keep everything tidy and manageable when not in use.
So, to Summarise!
My advice with everything to do with photography, is to keep it small and easy at the beginning. Take your time, learn, grow and build slowly. This will save you frustration and expense. Within my course and the FB forum, I have already helped people just like you, with their own shooting space and kit challenges. So, I know that we can learn and solve problems together.
That just leaves me to say good luck with establishing your shooting space. And remember! Don’t wait! Do it today!
Cheers for Now!
Shoot Products Like A Pro – Product Photography Course and Tuition