There’s nothing like having your own space.

Especially for photographers. I think probably everybody that shoots high-end images either full-time, part-time or just as a hobby dreams of having their own studio, a place where they can shoot without being in either their own or someone else’s way.

We were no different. Not that we don’t enjoy shooting wherever we can. We’ve improvised a studio in classrooms, in bonus rooms, and even in basements. But we’ve always wanted to have a place that was meant for shooting images, not somewhere that we’ve just had to make work.

Now we have that place.

About a month ago, we found out about a studio in the Old City of Knoxville that was being leased by a commercial photographer. He needed the space, but didn’t need it all the time and couldn’t afford to keep it otherwise. So he started offering other professional and serious amateur photographers the opportunity to sub-lease time in the studio. It fit perfectly for what we were looking for. Plenty of space, beautiful shooting areas, and nice amenities. We couldn’t have asked for anything better.

Today was the first opportunity that we had to get into the studio and do some shooting, and the beautiful and gracious Miss Tiffany, who you may remember from this post a while back, was kind enough to be our first test subject. I really just wanted to get a feel for what the lighting was like in the studio and get the chance to work on a few techniques that I don’t often get to do.

First, I purchased a ring flash this week and really wanted to try it out. I’ll do a longer post on this later, but basically a ring flash is an attachment that fits around the lens of your camera and directs the flash toward your subject from there. It creates a very flat light and a “halo” shadow effect that is very popular in fashion ads and magazines these days. We got some absolutely fabulous shots from this setup and we think our senior girls will really like this look:

Second, I wanted to do some “high key” looks, which are images shot against a white background that are slightly over-exposed. It’s a tricky technique, because believe it or not, getting a stark white background to look stark white in an image isn’t easy. You have to pour a lot of light against white to make it look white. I was very pleased with this image, but I didn’t get the background quite as white as I wanted:

And finally, since this is a building in the Old City, there are some really great brick walls with a lot of character. I wanted to take some shots against this background and see what I could get:

We honestly couldn’t have asked for a better start in our new studio setup. Tiffany was a fantastic model and got some really great images out of the day. This could be the start of something really good…