Do you love the look of lifestyle newborns but dread the extra cost of renting a studio? Guess what, I have a solution for you! You can turn your own living space into the perfect spot to capture your new addition. How, you ask? Let's find out!
When my daughter was born I was learning to adjust to a new camera while also running my photography business on an official basis here in Logan, UT. Because of this, I didn't have the time or the money to put into renting out a studio every single week. We were just college students living in a worn out townhouse, and I had to make do with daily photoshoots inside. I found many tips and tricks that will help you to make the perfect studio look for your own use every single day with little to no effort!
Find Natural Light
Natural light is your best friend. If you only take one thing away from this blog post, let it be this. When you begin your shoot turn off all artificial lights. Find a room that allows natural light to come in such as a room with large windows. Open up all the blinds and pull them up. By pulling them up it allows all the light to come inside and you won't get awful shadows casting onto your subject from the blind openings. If you choose to use a room that has the sun directly flowing in through the window, sheer white curtains are a fantastic addition to your room to help the harsh light become softer on your subject, and bonus they are beautiful decor!
Remove Unnecessary Items
Having anything in the background of your image can be very distracting. The more simple your background, the more elegant your pictures will look. For example, close your closet doors, and pick up anything off the floor that is in sight of your picture. When you leave it in the frame, it will cause a distraction and the focus will pull away from your main subject. The more simple and clean your surroundings look, the better your overall picture will look. Want an extra modern look? Throw an artificial plant in the corner of the room! They can serve as a duel purpose first as a prop, and second as a fantastic way to hide outlets!
One of the hardest concepts to grasp in photography is light. The darker your room is, the more grain you will see in your images due to having to raise your ISO. Natural light will help a ton as we talked about earlier to get those bright images that you desire, but incorporating white can make all of the difference. If you have a white room with natural light you have found your sanctuary. White allows for light to bounce off and brighten your subject. This is also extremely beneficial if you are more advanced and use an external flash. If you are using an external flash, don't be afraid to bounce the light off your white wall to help portray an even amount of light across your subject.
Pick the Right Time of Day
When shooting inside your own home it's incredibly important to consider the time of day you are choosing to shoot. If you are shooting past sunset you can forget anything regarding natural light. At this point you will need to turn your lights on, or bring in external photography lighting to brighten your subject. This is why it can be incredibly beneficial to begin shooting earlier in the day! My favorite time to shoot indoors is between 9:30 am and 2:00 pm. I choose these times because the sun is high in the sky and it will allow for light to brighten my studio space regardless of where my window is.
It doesn't matter if you live in a million dollar mansion or are a college student living in a one bedroom apartment, it is possible! All you have to do is find natural light, remove excess objects, find reflective whites, and shoot early in the day. By using these four simple tools, you will get bright and timeless images that will be such high quality others will assume you had a professional photographer take them for you.