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Living Space to Creative Space

I recently started shooting again after an 11 year retirement from photography. The decision happened pretty much over night, but my dilemma was that I didn't have a studio. I've had studios in the past, I've had 3 to be exact. The first one was in Milford, Ohio. It was an incredible space, long and wide with hardwood floors, 14 ft ceilings, a kitchen and shower which I used as a dark room. Yes, that was 18 years ago when I was still shooting with oh so beautiful black and white film making silver gelatin prints. It was a great space that was unfortunately lost to fire when some old wiring on the 3rd floor set the place ablaze in 2004.

I relocated over to a building in Mariemont which was just not appropriate at all as there was little available light due to it being a basement space and every time it rained, I would get water in the studio so I only stayed a mere 5 months. I wasn't having luck with photo studios so I decided to shoot mostly outdoors and in clients homes for a couple of years. It's fun shooting outdoors and you save money on rent but that longing to use light in a certain way, to get creative, gently nudged me into seeking another studio space.

I felt like I'd hit the jackpot when I signed a lease for a space over at Essex Studios in Walnut Hills. The rent was cheap, the space was large, the ceilings high and I was surrounded by other artists which was so cool. It did have a downside and that was the summertime. The building was not air conditioned and my studio would just get stifling hot which made it pretty uncomfortable some days, but overall, I did like shooting there.

So now, here I am, an empty nester and living in a small apartment. I sold my home I'd lived in for 20 years and opted to downsize and live a simpler life a couple of years ago. I never dreamed I'd be getting back into photo after all these years, but after some deep reflection, well, there's been a creative void in my life for the past decade and I've decided to fill it. The problem was, I didn't have a place to shoot. Or did I? Where there's a will, there's a way. The one thing I love about my apartment is that it reminds of the apartment I lived in in Minneapolis back when I was just getting going as a photographer. I shot probably half of my entire portfolio in that little space so I was pretty sure I could do the same here.

With a little imagination in the rearrangement of furniture, I moved my living room into my dining room making it a great little lounge area and I turned the living room into my studio. It's plenty big enough to do headshots, branding pics and some fashion shots and it's forced me to get creative with my lighting which has lead to a lot of thinking outside the box. I love it!

My next post will be about actually getting creative in a small space and using simple lighting techniques for dramatic results. Hope you stop by again!

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I am so glad you're shooting again, I so enjoyed working with you years ago. You are such a talented artist...! Once the word gets up how will you keep up?


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I really appreciate that Beth. I was always delighted with all the photo shoots we did together. And of course we can't forget the wonderful and talented Claire Bastian doing the make-up and hair. Fun times!! We'll do it again some day!!!!

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