How To Set Up A Home Photo Studio
How To Setup A Home Photo Studio
There is definitely a benefit to having your own home photo studio.
If you make and sell products, you can quickly and easily update your website and social media feeds.
If you have kids this really comes in handy. It’s Easter and the kids are in their outfits. You know you need to get their picture while they’re all dressed up before they make a mess. How about when it’s their birthday and you need that picture of the kiddies holding up their birthday number?
Ah, what about the yearly family Christmas picture you want to make into cards to go out for the holiday?
And you know what let’s not forget when the outfit you just threw together looks better than you thought. Yep, an in-home photo studio would be perfect for times like this.
All of these normally require either you to make an appointment in advance and get ready for a long wait. You also have to make sure you have everything you need for the photos. Plus, you have to choose a package and pictures. You will definitely be there for a couple of hours.
But I know what you’re thinking, the photography studio has backdrops, lighting, props, and pro-level cameras. But I will argue for most cases you can take most pics yourself at home and save yourself a few coins and some time.
Here’s what you need: A Backdrop Holder
Here are two ways you can set this up;
- a permanent solution and requires attaching hardware to the walls or ceiling but is low cost,
- this option can be set up and broken down as you need it and is also portable.
Option 1 || Attach to wall
So, for this you can take a quick trip to your local Lowes, Home Depot, Ace or whatever hardware store you frequent and pick up these items:
1/2″ galvanized pipe (1/2 inch diameter)
- 3″ length pipes x 2
- Elbows x 2
- 6″ length pipes x 2
- Plates x 2
Optional but recommended
Wall anchors (unless attaching to wood basement beams)
1″ conduit (1-inch diameter)
- 1 – length depends on how far apart you plan to set up each plate/pipe.
And so what you want to do now is:
Determine how much space you have and how wide you want the back drop to be. Backdrop rolls can range from 26” to 12’. So just set and space the plates up accordingly. Remember to leave a few inches on each side so you can take the back drop off and on. If you have 6′ of space you’ll a min 3 inches on each side.
Assemble the piping.
Now screw a 6″ galvanized pipe into one end of an elbow. Next, screw a 3″ pipe into the other end of the elbow. Repeat this for the remaining pipes and elbows and attach to the plate.
If you purchase the optional conduit, the conduit will hold the backdrop and be placed onto the galvanized piping.
The benefit here is that with the conduit as the backdrop holder you can use smaller size backdrop rolls or other items that can drape over the bar. This gives you a lot more options.
Option 2 || Purchase a Backdrop Stand
You can purchase a stand separately and even a photography kit that comes with;
- backdrop stand
- backdrop (usually green, white and black)
For backdrop stand only there’s Fudesy Background Support Kit
For a full kit there’s the Fovitec Studio Kit
Backdrops are the key element to keep the focus on your subject. There are honestly tons of choices. You can go with a plain white or color background especially if you’re running a business. If you’re doing family and kids photos you can use decorative backdrops.
For plain backdrops, I recommend Savage Seamless Backdrops. They come in almost every color in the rainbow. The sizes range from 26 inches to 12 feet wide.
You can order from Amazon here.
For themed pictures like Christmas, Halloween and Easter or pictures with kids in general you can’t go wrong with AllenJoy.
If you’re on a budget or need something quick and don’t have time to wait for delivery you can use bedsheets. Yes, you read that right bedsheets can work as a backdrop, and curtains as well. Just iron them before so any wrinkles don’t ruin your shots.
Lighting is extremely important to the outcome of your photo. I am of the motto that the more the better. Meaning I would rather have more lightboxes than I need to have photos that are unusable because they are too dark.
Your 100-watt GE bulb won’t give you the lighting you need.
Now trust me I know in this area you can go crazy but here are my recommendations. Start with the softboxes and work your way up.
A reflector can come in handy by helping balance out the light without the need for an extra softbox or electricity.
If you have an iPhone or Andriod phone you have a camera. Most cell phones made in the last 5 years have very good cameras with many features that are available in high-end cameras.
As long as your phone has autofocus and a self-timer you have a good starter camera. You can also consider an entry-level DSLR if you want more control and higher-quality photos but you can work your way up to that and again your cell phone can probably do an amazing job.
But if you are at least interested in researching entry-level DSLR’s you can consider these: