My small (under 120 sf ) but beautiful new studio space in Hampton Roads Virginia

I’m writing today to inspire other artists and photographers who might be searching for their perfect studio space in a world of retail storefront madness! Every space I could find was HUGE , I’m talking 3000 + SF, it was out of my budget and way too large to be practical as a toasty warm space for my newborn clients.

My year long search for a space ended when I found this tiny perfect office complex. It is in a great location, has a nice parking area with plenty of room, and it is super easy to find. When I say tiny I mean it 🙂 My room is just under 10′ * 12′ and it takes a bit of creativity to make it all work. I’m toying with the idea of a 200SF office down the hall a couple of doors to better accommodate my prop obsession. But for now its working out just fine.


Like I said, I had to get creative. The first step in this process was to move my settee out of the studio and into the hall by the door. I keep the studio really warm for my tiny clients, so this isn’t a bad thing really, now my clients have a comfy spot to rest for a few min if they want to cool off a bit, or make a phone call, or fill out paperwork. 12970432_10154041332573418_1192572482_oc

I set up the window wall as my main shooting space. This area receives beautiful natural light on a sunny day giving me more options so I don’t need to use my strobes on every session.

I love this area, the  beautiful window light, my Bella Bun® Bloq  poser, and a fur throw makes this the perfect natural baby portrait set up. The backdrop here is Savage seamless in Boned


The side wall has become my storage area for some of my backdrops, accessories, blankets and throws.e

Anything that doesn’t fit in that area gets tucked away in my changing table storage unit. I’m able to fit my upholstered chair near the backdrop area, which doubles as client seating and as a prop.  12970630_10154041332518418_708372336_o

My blanket ladder took me about 30 min to make, it really is a very simple concept, but WOW it can hold a LOT, and it makes finding the right throw much easier then when they are all folded and tucked away. I can definitely see another blanket ladder in the future.12970669_10154041332623418_1529328439_o

I use These Wood brackets to hold my backdrop pole with Savage seamless paper rolls



If you are curious about how the portraits are turning out with such a small working space here are a few samples from sessions I’ve had so far this month, a few of them even have behind the scenes images for you…

This first set up includes my Bella Bun® Contoured Poser with a faux fur drape in front of my Sherry Blossom Backdrop from Intuition backdrops… This exact fur I have not been able to find online, but backdrop outlet sells a very similar faux product called grizzly fur here and Intuition backdrops sells beautiful flokati  options…  I love every part of this set!



The next set is that same Backdrop and fur with baby sitting up


This is my favorite printed backdrop that I own, and these lace tutus were handmade for me by All Dressed Up


My next set has the same gorgeous baby girl on a PepperLu backdrop with a wood laminate floor from Lowes and the sweetest little romper from Backdrop Outlet


This set up was fun for me because I had my own little guy as a model holding his Papa’s Guitar with a backdrop from Lemondrop stop


Most of the backdrops below are seamless paper rolls from Savage, The grey I prefer is Thunder Grey

If you dream of having your own studio space but just can’t find the right location I encourage you to start looking into office buildings. You wont have the foot traffic that comes with a storefront commercial space, but if your business is anything like mine then 80% + of your sessions come from referrals, your webpage, or social media, not from walk ins anyway.

At 120 SF this new space is 1/5 the size of my Maine studio, but after my first month in business I can say its working like a charm.


I would love to have you like my page and share this blog to inspire other photographers who are considering their own small studio space.



About Amanda Rachael

I am a Mom to 5 children, Wife of Jed, Child of God, Photographer, and Prop designer
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1 Response to My small (under 120 sf ) but beautiful new studio space in Hampton Roads Virginia

  1. Darlene Chadbourne says:

    You do amazing work! We sure miss you here in Maine.

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