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Preparing your First Photography Studio

By Michelle Ecker on March 18, 2016


The New York Institute of Photography is one of the world’s largest photography schools and because we are, we often publish fun and useful photography tips on our photography blog. Please enjoy!

Preparing your First Photography Studio

After completing an NYIP course, countless students’ next professional move is to begin setting up a legitimate, profitable business. For many, this initially comes in the form of a home studio. If there is a space in your residence in which you could accommodate this conversion, here are 4 things to get started with in developing your first functional home workspace:

1. Background Display- Most backdrops are relatively inexpensive and come in the form of large rolled up reels of paper available in a variety of colors. If it’s easier for you to obtain in your area, a sheet of fabric could work as well- many photographers suggest velvet as the most preferable material option. Once you decide on and purchase the physical backdrop covering, you’ll then need support stands to drape it over and keep it in place.

2. Main Light- This is what illuminates the majority of your subject’s face. The main light is the largest in any lighting arrangement, and should be the brightest.

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3. Reflector- This tool is used as a way to bounce light from the main source onto the shadowed side of the subject’s face. Although it’s important to maintain a vague shadow in an effort to accentuate the subject’s facial shape, the reflector can help you adjust so that said shadow doesn’t overwhelm the profile and distract the viewer.

4. Hair Light- This tool is used in an effort to, unsurprisingly, illuminate the subject’s hair. Generally placed behind the subject several feet above his or her head, the hair light can be moved either slightly to one side of or directly above a given model, depending on which position offers the most flattering illumination.

Want to learn more? NYIP offers accredited photography courses online that can help you improve your hobby or start a new career. Request your free course catalog today!