Thoughts about studio space

It's always interesting how hard it is to be creative when faced with a blank canvas. It's the same with writers and a blank page.

So, faced with a large blank floor space we've kind of had the same problems.

How many studios? What other spaces should we have? Make-up rooms, changing areas, video studios, audio studios. How big does the viewing room need to be? Just how much stuff needs storing?

studios customer studio shooting sets Simon Q. Walden,, sqw, FilmPhoto, photography

Always spoil the customer

This advice was given to me years ago and think it's vital, if it is a choice between me getting the space or the customer, then the customer should have it. The customer experience should be as good as we can make it. So our first plan for the customer viewing room looked OK on paper, but when I laid it out on the floor it became obvious it wasn't big enough.

Shooting Distance

I also did some proper measurements of how much shooting distance is needed. As regular readers will know one of my big gripes with so many photos is that they have been shot too wide. For people photography I a look for a 100mm focal length for correct proportions. So for a full length shot we need at least 18 feet to be OK, for headshots we can of course be closer in.

But we also want to have other photographers rent the studios as well, and in particular we have a well known dance photographer who regularly shoots at around 40 feet distance, so we need to accommodate him too.

Certainly larger groups also need a longer shooting distance too, so we know at least one studio has to have a forty foot length minimum.

Backdrops and Sets

Then there is the hardest part of all - just what sets do you want to put in? We've got a long list of ideas, and I'm not sure how many we will manage, but in particular we want some more three dimensional sets, rather than just all flats. So we need to accommodate corners and walls coming into the studio area.

If you've read the first post in the series you will have seen the plan for version 5 of the layout, I'm now onto plan 9 I think. At the moment the thinking is we will drop the baby studio in favour of running two larger studios. The tough problem is trying to fit an audio booth into the space. I want to return to creating podcasts and having a good audio recording space would be a great bonus.

I don't have to commit until beginning of January, so intend to spend a lot of Xmas trying out different combinations and shapes.