Set Up an Easy Home Photo Studio

I'm happy to be back at UpCraft Club from Sew Happily Ever After. This time, I am talking about photography. LBG Studio has written a concise and informative ebook about photography for bloggers. It's not just for bloggers, though. Really anyone who wants to up their game a notch in the photography area would benefit from reading this e-book.
It isn't long, but it is very informative and full of high quality photos and information. You will be walked through how to compose an excellent photo as well as learn a bit about how to use your DSLR camera like a pro. Also included are links to the author's favorite products to use in your own home studio. 
My 15 year old daughter has been working on photography for 4H every year since she was in third grade. She has learned a lot about photography along the way and is now confident enough to take family photos for friends and family. She even started her own photography page: Kenzie Nicole Photography. Consequently, she is my photographer for my many blog and sewing projects.
Even though I usually rely on her to take my pictures for the blog, I felt like I should read this e-book just so that I could keep up with her as far as knowledge and the 'how to' of photography. Plus there have a been a few times that she simply wasn't available to shoot for me so I had to do it myself. (She does a MUCH better job).
Now I will walk you through setting up a photography studio in your own home. I'm sure there are many ways to do this, but this is how we do it.
Step 1:
Choose a background that is not distracting. You also want a background that will contrast with the object or outfit you are photographing. I found a large bulletin board paper roll at Hobby Lobby. With a coupon it was around $6. I have also used a large piece of fabric as a background. The polka dot fabric that you see above is actually about 3 yards of utility fabric from JoAnn's. Utility fabric is really inexpensive and with a coupon (or on sale) it's extremely reasonable. 
Step 2:
Hang your background on a flat wall. You want to choose an area that has lots of natural light for the best results. You can see that we use a wall directly by a large window. In order to use this area we have to rearrange a bit of furniture, which is not a big deal because that is only 1 chair and a side table. We also move the curtains out of the way to let in as much light as possible. Actually you can see a large shadow just under the window. We could actually move the background about six inches away from the window. You can see where the natural light falls and where the best photos will be taken. We usually have our subject face the light and stand at an angle to the subject with the window to the back of the camera.

  Step 3:
If you want to focus more light on your subject, you can place a solid white piece of poster board opposite the window. We have also used a whiteboard to reflect light. With a subject standing up, we have found that we don't need the poster board, but if photographing a baby or a doll or other small object, we have set up our background on a table with the whiteboard or poster board as a light reflector and as a background.
Above is an example of using the whiteboard on the tabletop. This is next to the same window in the earlier pictures. We used the neutral wall in our home for the background with the whiteboard as the "floor". We added the brightly colored lunch box for some support to hold up the doll.

In a pinch, or when I don't want to rearrange the furniture for a shoot, I use the front door. The white door makes a nice background plus it reflects the light making it nice and bright. A solid colored blanket on the floor also adds a good backdrop. It's not ideal as far as lighting, but it works for a quick photo shoot.

I hope you will try using your camera indoors and setting up a temporary studio for some of your photos. Outdoor photos are ideal and give you a wide variety of backgrounds, but sometimes the weather doesn't cooperate. Having an indoor area to take photos allows you to work around the weather conditions.

We want to see the images you take or share a peek at your home studio set up. Tag us on Instagram @UpCraftClub and be sure to get the Photography for Bloggers E-book by LBG Studio to take your photos to the next level.

September 03, 2015 by UpCraft Club
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