The Not-So-Grand Tour of My Miniature Studio

Last week I promised you a tour of my studio, so here it is:

The basic studio itself is a 14 1/2” x 18” x 1/2” piece of plywood for the base, an 11” x 14” X 1” piece of board glued to that, and 1” square stock glued around the outside to create a 1' deep channel on three sides. On two of the sides there is a second set of the square stock which allows me to set up two background boards- in case I want a room with a view.

This sits on top of an old clothes dresser that holds some of my scene supplies. It used to hold all of them but you know how that goes....

The walls are foamcore slid into the channels. I usually use two but I can put three in if I need to. I suppose I could use four if I really wanted to. It would have to be for a pretty specific effect, though. Hmm...let me think on that one....

The lighting in my pictures is important to me and I use a variety of lights and lighting techniques to achieve the effects that I want. My main lights are Ott Lights. Effect lighting is achieved with strings of grain of wheat or grain of rice bulbs in various colors. Spots are hand held pocket flashlights.

My backgrounds are various fabrics, papers and photo prints. Alligator clips hold them on the foamcore.

Then there's all the “stuff” I use to actually make the picture. That can be anything that catches my eye and works as what I want to see. Obviously I don't use anything that's copyrighted or trademarked or that I don't have permission to use, but that still leaves me plenty to work with.

And that's it. That's my playground. It takes up very little space, cost very little money and sits very patiently out of the way, waiting for me to be able to spend some time in it. If space were really at a premium, I could easily break it down and store it flat in a drawer.

The one other piece of equipment that I use (kind of an important one, really) is my camera. I use a Canon EOS Rebel T5. Not very expensive, very user-friendly. You may have a favorite one you would prefer to use. If you really want to get started having fun in your miniature studio and don't have a camera or the funds for one at the moment, you can use your cell phone. However there are some really good reasons why you might not want to use it for very long. For a more knowledgeable discussion on those reasons and some great suggestions for good quality, inexpensive cameras, you might want to check out Imp-Probable Artist Chuck's blog at Third Thoughts Media.

There are the basics. They're the first step on a grand tour of your own imagining. Feel free to post links to pictures of your worlds. I'd love to see them! Thanks for stopping by.

Coming next week: Building depth with Backgrounds

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