Building a studio is a big project. It takes time and a good bit of help. I had the assistance of Adrian Marquez, my building contractor. I wanted a simple space, and I wanted it to also serve as a guest house.
The guest house function made it important to have a full bathroom/shower in the studio. We added cabinets for dishes and supplies, and granite countertops., The microwave and Nespresso machine make tea or coffee easy. The mini-fridge keeps drinks cold. There’s a supply of bottled water, beer and wine at all times.
Several details required more than basic building skills. The big item is an infinity wall where the floor and ceiling curve to meet each other without any obvious line. The structure under the floor is complex, and quite strong. The main floor is concrete, with the portion near the infinity wall painted to match the wall identically.
Another detail is an oversize window, 4′ x 7′, with a 6″ ledge built strong enough for a model to stand on it. Above the window on the outside we added a decorative beam.
Photography uses lights and lights use electricity, so there are plentiful outlets in the studio. One outlet is in the middle of the floor, and there are outlets high on the wall as well as around the bottom of the room. One of these was placed specifically to let the WiFi router be plugged in right in an upper window. The mesh system connects flawlessly and with high speed to the home.
A detail was also added to the ceiling. Three hooks were installed above the main photo space to allow items to hang in that space. These hooks were engineered for very high load bearing, so my aerial silks will be secure.
A chaise lounge is a great photo prop. That’s the sofa. The bed’s headboard was custom made in Mexico to give a SW feel The paint on the headboard was customized to match the textured paint on the accent wall.
Outside the entry doors there are decorative lights, and by the main entry there is a tile mural of the virgin Guadalupe. I left space on the side of the building facing the street for a mural should I decide to add one later.
Finally, I landscaped all around the studio, built a trellis and an arbor, and even got 3 California Fan Palms and a tree aloe (Aloe ‘Hercules’). Ocatillos, cacti, and red birds of paradise will be prominent among the landscape items, and there are a number of colorful pots. Behind the studio is the sculpture garden, but that’s another post.
I will show the interior of the studio in more detail in a subsequent post. But this shows the 12′ ceilings and the various lights and aerial silks. Even little corners of the couch and bed sneak their way into the front of the frame.
If you are thinking of building a studio, look at mine if you’re in town. I used 12′ ceilings. You might be OK with 10′. Seeing my space may help you decide an even better way to build yours, and that’s OK. I’m quite happy with mine and I expect to get great photos working with talented people within these walls.