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How to turn your living room into a photo studio

The post How you can turn your living room into a photo studio first appeared at Digital Photography School. It is written by Jackie Lamas.

Have you ever wanted a studio space where you could bring in customers and photograph all kinds of portraits and ideas? You can! Your living room, or any room in your house, can be converted quickly so that you can photograph your studio ideas at home!

If you set backgrounds on a solid wall, you can create fantastic portraits in your own living room.

Find the right space

Your living room is perhaps the room with the largest space for you to get the best angles and adjust your lights. As long as you have approximately 10 feet of empty wall space, you can use it for your at-home studio.

Choose a wall where you can mount backgrounds. Set up studio paper or background paper. You can also use a painted wall for your photos. It doesn't have to be anything special and you could also use the existing wall as the main background.

A bedroom with large windows can be used as a studio for portraits.

Why 10 feet? The larger your space on the wall, the more space you have on the sides of your photos. This allows you to photograph both horizontally and vertically. You also have room for more than one person.

If you are photographing alone or when photographing photos, a smaller wall space would work. A wall with 5 feet would be sufficient for headshots and individuals.

Other spaces in your house that could work

The living room does not have to be the only space that you can use. For example, if you don't have studio lights, but want to make beautiful portraits with a creative direction in backgrounds and not want to go on location, your house can still work!

You can photograph on a covered terrace with lots of wall space, in your garage, in the bedroom or on a balcony. All these spaces work if you have the space on the wall to place your subject and space to photograph them remotely.

This makes it much easier to choose the right location for your at-home studio in case you don't have any studio lighting equipment or a special look for your photos.

Make the best setup for studio / flash established

You don't necessarily have to use studio lights for your studio, but if that's what you're going to use, we'll go through what you need in the room for the best results.

Use the flash that bounces off the ceiling to illuminate portraits in your living room or in the room you want for your home studio.

You must choose a wall space that is located in a dark or not so well-lit room. You can also use shades or curtains to block light so that your off-camera lighting can illuminate your scene correctly.

Use a flash to illuminate these portraits to simulate the sun. Plain wall background in the bedroom.

Living rooms offer the most space, but make sure that you can get dark enough to put the lights exactly where you want them. You can also use external flash units to set up your home studio.

You can creatively illuminate portraits if you have control over the space and the lighting.

Make sure there is a lamp nearby so that you can use it as a modeling lamp. You can also use a light dimmer so that the light does not affect the outcome or the white balance, lighting or appearance that you are trying to achieve.

Best set-up for natural light at-home studio

If your living room or another room in your house has lots of natural light, you can certainly install your studio there. The same tips apply as long as there is room in the wall, so that you can place your subject and have enough space in the frame in case you need trimming. It also gives you the option to shoot vertically or horizontally.

This was recorded with natural light using a silver reflector with a gray background of 3 × 3 on the wall. Edited to increase the contrast and desaturate the colors.

Choose a room with fantastic window light or light that enters the room. For example, a garage space with the garage door open is a good option. Another good option is a living room with large sliding doors where light floods the room. Make sure that the sunlight does not enter the room directly or through the window where it casts strange shadows on your subject.

You can hang transparent curtains to spread the light. This will help with harsh lighting, shadows and the temperature of the room. Of course, you don't necessarily have to have the window open unless it adds more light to your scene – if that's the look you're going for.

If your house has textured walls, you can also use them as backgrounds for the portraits!

Use a reflector and bounce cards to reflect the light in the desired direction. Black flags (black signs that help darken the light) and are great for creating shadows and can help you provide more dramatic lighting.

Watch the floor

Your floor is already installed in your house and this can be a problem if you are shooting full-length portraits. See if the floor is what you want for your photos. If that is not the case, you can use paper and place it all the way to the floor from the wall. This ensures a seamless display of your photos like a real studio.

In the previous photo we covered the floor with a black sheet, so that we could photoshopping the black background and create a seamless look.

You can also get cheap laminate flooring on a laminate basis and create your portable floor. If the trimming foot to the floor is not disturbing, you can even photoshopping this to create a more seamless look with the wall and floor.

Be aware of your floor so that you know what to do before you take pictures in your new home studio.

Backgrounds for in-home studios ' s

There are many great backgrounds that you can use for a home studio. Since it is completely your space, you can become very creative. The simplest is the one that is already available! Use the existing wall color and texture to create interesting portraits.

You can use the existing layout to create beautiful portraits or stick a paper background to the wall for a seamless background.

Other backgrounds that you can use can be:

  • A sheet that covers the wall and on the floor for a seamless textile background.
  • Paper rolled to the floor for seamless or a piece of paper stuck to the wall for close-up portraits
  • Any fabric or paper with a print on it
  • Different colored paper for headshots

Almost anything you can imagine can create as a background! You can become very creative with balloons, tissue paper, hanging strings, lights, paper flowers, artificial flowers, strings or hanging garlands that you have made yourself or that are already newspapers or even plants.

The options and ideas are unlimited and give your photos a unique look, regardless of your style.

Finally

Your living room can be the perfect space for you to create beautiful studio work. You do not need chic equipment, just beautiful wall space and the light that you like to photograph with. Add some music and you have the perfect comfortable studio at home!

Do you have other suggestions to make a great living room studio? Share with us and our readers in the comments below.

The post How you can turn your living room into a photo studio first appeared at Digital Photography School. It is written by Jackie Lamas.

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