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Studio Lighting

Lesson 1 of 18

Class Introduction & Philosophy of Studio Space

Zack Arias

Studio Lighting

Zack Arias

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Lesson Info

1. Class Introduction & Philosophy of Studio Space

Lesson Info

Class Introduction & Philosophy of Studio Space

one of things you you'll know about zack if you don't already and people were tuning in and probably following him for following along with him for a long long time but he's an amazing human being so you put all those things together and you sit down and you watch him for a whole weekend straight free live on the internet and it's going to be a really amazing experience without further ado I am so pleased and grateful to introduce my good friend mr zack areas can we have a round of applause please wide shot thank case I would love to know give us a very short version what they're in for in store this weekend what you doing uh no I'm not gonna be that he went up on dh er not beating anyone up how this is going to run is this evening is three for ish ours we don't know just go over ah philosophy of having a studio space space considerations um and we're going to be talking about exposure we're going to be talking about basic equipment gear modifiers and uh tomorrow morning ten a m pacifi...

c we start shooting and setting up and walking through that whole process and how saturday is going to work as we're going to kind of start slow where I'm setting something up and I'm using this soft box for this reason if I want to make a change I met changing to the umbrella for this reason you're kind of slow it's article kind of thing we're shooting for two days saturday and sunday we'll have little break out many sessions of like grip equipment or something like that um come sunday who were moving in a little faster pace and it's more uh I'm on a job these are my clients I have to deliver I am kind of talking through what's going on my head but I'm doing it and a little faster of apace suite so we start very slow and we build up to we're just going so we gotta go we gotta go we gotta go well uh you guys are in for a huge treat and one more time I would like to say it's a it's a a great honor to have you part of creative life family it's our goal to bring in the best creative educators in the world and they're not available so that's what you're gonna get more of this weekend you guys please one more round applause for bringing zacarias thank you so much um alright thanks sir all right um yeah big thanks tio chase to the creative live team of my awesome wife meghan is right off over here and hawk is hawk danger our youngest is crawling around here somewhere um uh we put him in a closet alright gave me see stand to chew on but yeah big thanks to everyone for putting this on um I I swear I've nearly had a heart attack ah a couple of times in the few last few weeks is we've been preparing and getting this ready um I wanted to bring something different to this class uh than what I normally do um it's a bigger production my main man dan had to pack two hundred twenty seven pounds of our stuff and so we brought two hundred twenty seven pounds of our studio here and then rented another five hundred pounds so we have a lot of stuff to be going over um I just kind of went through the basic basic idea of what this weekend's gonna look like um some of you tuning in you understand exposure you understand lights you already own equipment you have some modifiers um and what you're wanting out of this is how do you pose people how do you know that was my back shot nice um that's extra um you're looking for something uh beyond exposure and gear and all of that uh some of you joining us you look at flashes and you're just scared to death of them um you don't know how to control them you don't know which modifiers you don't ah you're not even sure like which lights should even purchase right so everyone be patient you know if if you already own lights and you understand exposure and you're looking for something else uh the world cup is on um you know you can kind of tuned me out and I'll I'll come up with a hand signal you know for like you know intermediates walk down now um so that's going to the weekend it's kind of organic it's kind of figuring it out as we go sometimes it's very much like my own photo shoots clients walk in the door I shake their hand I'm ready to go you ready I'm ready and in my brain I'm going what am I going to do what am I going to do what am I going to do what am I going to do what I always do is I start simple and then I move forward from there so this class is very much we're going to start very simple and then we move forward all right um great so we've got that taken care of I want to talk about the philosophy of studio space and remember this is a studio lighting class all right so this is working in a controlled environment with controlled lighting basically but that's a kind of a boring you know um kind of class title so we didn't call it controlled lighting in controlled environments but that's what this is studio lighting you might be saying you know I don't have a studio but at the end of the day a studio is a floor and a couple of walls so if you have access to a floor and a couple of walls that is studio space that maybe your spare bedroom that maybe your garage that may be a place you know five thousand square foot warehouse down the street that you rent um a studio space is just a controlled environment that you have control over the lighting all right we're not doing anything location based we really won't even be working available light uh this weekend it all we're going to pretty pretty much be sticking with strobes flashes everything from hot shoe flashes to you no more powerful strobes will be talking about all the gear and how that all breaks down um so things like going out and working on location that's not really anything that we're going to be dealing with this weekend because that's its own whole class right there uh the other thing that um uh to be considering is it is a lighting class so the stuff that like I'll be doing here this weekend I do on location we just had a magazine assignment recently we had to shoot the owners of a new restaurant inside of their new space and went back into a little corner and it was two walls on the floor and I had to bring out my strobes and bring out my modifiers and basically it was a studio situation all right um so my history of having a studio space I do have my own dedicated studio space and I have been a full time photographer back at it again I tried once before I failed miserably got to come back six and a half years ago it'll be seven years this october all right so seven years ago this coming october I came back into photography and at about the two year mark of that my business was growing I was working out of a car one coffee shop in atlanta place called octane on the west side of atlanta and that was my office and I would have my client's meet me there and we'd have a little pre production meeting and we'd go out we'd shoot on location everything was location and if I needed a studio kind of setting man if I could find a parking garage that was empty at night I suddenly had like a twenty thousand square foot studio you know with a couple two eighty five flashes and you know and that's it but I've set up seamless on on uh sidewalks things like that um so I got to this point where my business was growing and I'm working out of my house and here's the biggest reason why I have a studio is I am a workaholic alright I'm a workaholic and if there's work in front of me I'm gonna work and when work was at home I couldn't find a healthy dividing line between work and home so I'd come home but I would be at work I'd be in front of my computer staring at it doing things on the computer and and um uh my family didn't really say oh well you know dad's here um he's just on the computer so dad's home so he's only but I was at work and I needed to work but sometimes that work went into dinner time or I'd leave the dinner table and I'd go back toe work I'd have e mails to do I'd have this to do and I was getting to this point where I needed to separate physic physically separate my space from home and work so when I went home I was home when I went to work I was at work and that was when I started thinking about a studio space there were some logistical problems with being a location on ly photographer um what if it rains I mean you guys in seattle like you know but at least all your clients get it to you know um at least I understand that but and atlanta like if it rains there goes my shoot um and then suddenly I'm scrambling for all indoor locations and um it would I was thinking it be nice to have a little spot of my own where we could always go and if all hell broke loose with the weather I could pull off a shoot um and I was getting to the point with my income uh I was driving this beat up old truck my father had given me and I could go get a new car and a car payment in higher insurance payment or I could get a little small studio space and a graphic designer friend of mine told me about little space it was eight hundred square feet and he was going to rent half of it for his office that's four hundred square feet this nineteen foot by twenty one foot little box of a room basically um and it was four hundred dollars and I figured it out with a car payment and my crappy credit score that I had and insurance and all of that I'd be four hundred four hundred fifty dollars a month for buying a car and I thought all right I can buy a car that's gonna cost me money or maybe I could get this little studio space over here and maybe that can make me money so I signed the lease and funny story murphy's law I go to the place I signed the lease I have my little square box four hundred square feet it's mine I walk back out in the parking lot in my truck won't start on I had to call a buddy of mine to come give me a jump because he alternated blue you know and that alternator was almost a month of rent and I'm like what have I just done you know you get over those kind of things a little tiny I didn't go out and like blow it out and get this big space and I'm just going to go create a big huge studio with a storefront that's really expensive and and all of that I just needed a space that was in a fairly cool area a place where I could walk outside and I'd have some outside locations I could shoot and I could do something inside as well so my first space four hundred square feet um I had twenty one feet on the longest side and the first thing I did was I bought a roll of white seamless paper and I started shooting on that white seamless paper a lot and it started to get boring and I started saying and I didn't have a lot of money too go buy a bunch of different stuff uh toe like trick out four hundred square feet tricking out four hundred square feet is like it's like tricking out ineighty want her cell you know I mean there's only so much you can do to an eighty one to sell before it's a little like okay why are you putting you know five thousand dollars of stuff into a five hundred dollar car so a white seamless was it and I start getting bored with it and I still like how much can I do with this one white seamless background um and then I started learning how to make a white how to make it gray how to make a black we're going to start with that tomorrow morning um white seamless is now part of my style it's part of what I do every client that walks in the door is shot on white seamless um one day I hope I could you know I could do a show of my clients you know ten years of my work and it's going to be everything's going to be white seamless um because I've shot every client nearly in the last five years on white seedless um so that was my little space and I was there for a year and my business grew and it was going to the point where I could not shoot in that space any longer um I have done everything I could with that space it was time to get a little bit larger of a space I was getting ah some opportunities to shoot a little higher level client that wasn't quite the it wasn't quite the uh the environment I wanted to bring a higher end clients into um and so I started looking for another space I found a great deal on this artist's loft in atlanta I got a twenty five hundred square foot studio for twelve hundred bucks a month it was amazing it was a beautiful space it was a commercial photographer is place for thirty five years I got this heck of a deal and I love that space I missed that space I still mega night we've will pine away for that old studio developers came in they wanted to buy the whole property turn it into a new fancy loft space um we were all bought out of our lease we were all given sixty days notice we all had to go off and find a new space the deal fell through but I'd already committed to a new lease and and um and we started to build out of space so I couldn't really move but now my studio is a mile and a half from my house that's another nice thing about working for myself is that I can kind of be in control of what my commute looks like my commute is a mile and a half um if I hit every red light it takes me ten or twelve minutes um to get back and forth I'm I'm never any further than about four miles away from the kids from their school uh where they are so um it's nice to have my life contained pretty much in tow one zip code all right so uh we built out um our studio I'm going to have like a video tour of that on my blogged and a few weeks we were gonna have that ready for this class but we've had a project in house lately that we're under a un agreement that nothing of that project can be shown until it's completed so we couldn't really do anything because our studios filled with stuff that we couldn't show so on a few weeks once that's all cleared out and weaken mop and vacuum and clean up we'll do a little video tour of our space if you're considering a studio space um again this we were just kind of talking philosophy of having a studio space you're sitting at home you're shooting in your garage right now you have a shed in the back you have a third bedroom second bedroom or you could do like I've done before you push all the furniture to the walls in the living room is now your space that you shoot in um and you're thinking about a space you're saying you know I'd like to maybe one day move into a studio space something that I want to put into your head is what else can it be other than a photo studio all right um what happened with me is I uh when I got my big space the twenty five hundred square foot kind of loft space um a friend of mine contacted me who's an artist in atlanta and he said hey I'm ah I want to do it a show of my art and I just want to do it for kind of friends and family and it takes months and months and months and months even to get into some of the better like coffee houses um uh hang my stuff at this coffee house it'll be eight months till I can get in there and I'd love to do some sort of little show and I was talking to scott dilly a mutual friend of ours and he said you know you have a big space do you think that I could come like hang stuff up and have a little party for my friends and family and I've been I've been thinking about my space had been sitting in it um that's another beautiful thing about my studio is like I can go there and it's my space that's that's my place and I can just hang out there and think about stuff and I've been thinking about my space and what a blessing it's been because I went from my little crappy two bedroom apartment working out of coffee shops that my little four hundred square foot shoe box of a place now I have this pretty nice space and it was a blessing and I had been thinking about how could I use this space it's a blessing to me and let it be a blessing to others and then here comes my friend he calls me up says I need a place to put my art I'm like let's do it let's throw a party in fact you invite your friends and family island by my friends and family will bring in my clients is well um and we'll have a night of it and that is kind of turned into this thing because if you have a studio space that you're paying dedicated rent on on a friday night guess what you have to pay that rent right every night every day for as long as you leased the place you have to pay rent so it can sit empty on a friday night and you have to pay rent you could fill it with one hundred fifty people and bring them around one sort of on idea or an event or on artist or whatever and you can fill up your space with one hundred fifty people and you're still paying your rent so our spaces open toe artists it's open to non profits it's opened a small like emerging business owners they wanted to a product launch um but they're building stuff in their basement but they'd love to have a product launch party for their jewelry or ah fashion line that they're creating or something like that our spaces available for free um for people like that and all we do say you know what you kind of match up with the kind of same people we are but we love your work we love your art we believe in your business we believe in your organization our studios open you bring your friends will bring our friends will get some drinks we'll get some food and we'll have a whole party of it and it's been great um and and we don't do it enough like I'd like to be doing an event in my space once a month um it's to give back to the community it's to help people out um and down the list um it's part of your brand and suddenly you have one hundred and fifty people coming in that get to see your studio and get to see your space and you get to shake their hand and you get to meet them um and there's all the advertising you can do in the world but if someone could walk into your space and you shake their hand and talk to him and talk to him about your place and and what you do um and bring them around some other kind of event like this artist or this business or this organization um it's a great great great networking tool so my studio is mainly two separate home uh and work so I can have that dividing line that dividing line gets messy sometimes um are kids are in our studio space a lot so there's always a little corner with you know toys and we have jumpy you know seats off of the door frames and uh there's a big beanbag and um so I love that my kids can come to my office my place of work and they see what their dad does um you know a lot of people don't get to the a lot of kids don't get to see what their parents do growing up well dad's at the office moms that at the hospital working or whether they don't get to go hang out and watch their parents work um and I like that my kids get to come hang out and watch watch me work um but you know there's those lines meghan are we still try to find the balance so that that's my space um that's why I have a studio um and if you have a studio space you need to remember you need to put this in your head it's a blessing you are blessed that you get to be working to the point with a camera doing something you love to the point where you have your own space dedicated to it and how can you turn that blessing into other for other people and it your motivation should not be because it will come back and pay you back in work but the fact of the matter is it will come around and help your business if you just shut the doors and you don't want anybody else in there um then you go do your work and you shut the doors you're still paying rent on the place is filling up with people all right so that is my kind of philosophy my history where I'm coming from about studio space because I'm talking about studio lighting and and working in a studio and clients coming in and we're gonna talk about gear and we're going to nerd out on all the photons and an inverse square law and what seconds and pro photo versus alien bees and all of that um questions let's let's put a call out for questions real quick we'll start with questions from uh the live audience and that way people in the interwebs uh could be typing out anything any questions about this kind of thing studio space anything all right susan I have a question in the chat room from I rest my case they'd like to know is the purpose of the white seamless to do dropouts and what do you do with shadows we'll talk about that is we start shooting tomorrow the purpose of the white seamless is just having a very clean simple background um you can do dropouts I'll do a little bit of post production it's not simply to rip them off one background and placed them in paris france you know with the stock photo I don't do anything like that with it um but it's ah it's a simple clean classic kind of look you can't go backto avedon's work and his stuff shot on you know just pure white backgrounds it's it's just sort of a timeless classic thing and it's something I know it's something that simple it's something easy um I work with a lot of editorial and commercial clients or music industry clients and they need a picture they could drop artwork and text and all of that stuff on and you give them a nice clean white palette to do that um and they can throw a design of a poster or card or something together very quickly with a white background um so that's why I shoot with that derek uh tim in the chat room would like to know what kind of ceiling height you would recommend if somebody's looking for a space you know what kind of space do they think they need further space considerations that's a great one um space considerations when setting up a controlled environment for controlled lighting the question is ceiling height I would say minimum ten feet minimum ten feet fourteen fifteen feet uh is it gives you a lot more options um I would prefer to have about a fourteen to fifteen foot ceiling height you could have you got a twenty foot twenty five foot ceilings but working like indoors with a nine foot standard residential ceiling a lot of a lot of challenges that will talk about this weekend of what would happen right now if I had a nine foot ceiling then that means my light would have to come down to here and now I've got this issue and this is how I would try to work around it um I would say other space considerations in my own personal um personal experience in working in studio spaces I would say a minimum of a thousand square feet a thousand square feet that's open um eight hundred square feet that's open could work um you're going toe want your longest throw to be able to have that um free from any uh polls walls columns desks anything like that um is open of a space is possible um minimum if you find a thousand great um start getting up to fifteen hundred two thousand square feet very if it's open not just chopped up into fourteen different offices but it's an open floor plan fifteen hundred two thousand square feet very nice size to be working in with eleven to twelve foot ceiling um you could be very happy in that kind of space yes well would like bob would like to know about windows windows uh with them or you are not window lights amazing my first place did not it was it was an inside little box I didn't have any natural light coming in ah the space that we have now has sixty four feet of ah florida ceiling windows the whole front of it is windows and I love it they are south facing so that means I am getting in atlanta um I am getting son direct sun from about nine in the morning until about five or six in the evening on and it's coming just track it's right across the front of my building now that classic uh studio space would have northern facing windows right so you're not getting direct sunlight into it but you're having this beautiful window light so a lot of people I want to find northern facing windows but when you start ng to shop for a place and you're saying can you just take this building turn it around um because it's just the windows are in the wrong location when you when you have to find a space based on north facing windows your options just became this big right so I found this space and what we use our siri's of curtains um we have two two sets of curtains one is a diffusion curtain that we'll just uh diffuse all of that sunlight and then we have a roll black curtains that if we need to cut all of it out so it's great to have like if you get a job shooting headshots for an actor and actress many people enjoy uh they prefer natural light for headshots if an actor and actress comes to my studio they're looking for a head shot it's going to be natural like I'm just gonna put him up next to the big windows and boom boom boom there we go um I've built my psych wall we'll talk about cycles tomorrow when we've set up white seamless I built my psych wall in such a way that that I could just open the windows and shoot on my site with available light um and it's beautiful gorgeous light uh but available light is what it is and you can modify it a bit with scrims silks reflectors but if I want to take a big light airy available light studio and make it black at two o'clock in the afternoon um I've got to go to my strokes to do that so I have more available light than I know what to do with um in my space but many many times I gotta cut all that available light out and I'm going right to strobes because I have more control of what I could do with strobes than I can with available light chase I was kind of hoping to inspire some of the people here in the live audience stand to ask some questions as well one of the ones that I thought people out on the internet world might want to know about too when you think about your studio space is not necessary just just to seamless right you've talked to me you know I have had conversations about building sets and stuff like that can you talk about making cool cool places to shoot within your studio yes um and everything in my studio has tohave like fourteen different purposes like there's nothing in our studio that has one single purpose and it does nothing else we have these uh these rolling carts um a their storage um they have kind of a nice wood uh kind of front to them I can roll them in behind somebody and it's suddenly a background um it's a gear cart and it is a cocktail bar for events I mean it every it's got to do everything from a photo background to a cocktail too storage to uh gear cartwright um and one nice thing with having higher ceilings and one thing that we'll talk about this weekend as you can build set pieces modular set pieces that you can bring in um and clamp them together and build a set build a little room build a vignette build build something inside of your space so client comes to you and says we want this kind of look um you khun just build the set in the middle of your studio and make that happen I worked at catalog houses when I was in photography school in the set department um and and so I became you know uh pretty good with running a saw and a and a nail gun and could knock together some quick walls um and once you build some dummy walls we'll talk about this we have a set a little tiny corner set uh built in the next room that will use this weekend you can build that set and you keep those walls and then you say ok next clients coming in we're gonna paint it we're gonna tape stuff to it we're gonna whatever we want to do we're going to change it up and you could make different things going on in your studio how much do you guys build sets in your space we bill them a lot actually and ah I'd say most of the work that we do is location based but that's one of the things you hit on two things that I think you're super qi for us which is the ability to build stuff whether it's a big bathroom set or a big living room lifestyle set but also the versatility of all the stuff because you you you start getting some gear and everything has to have a lot of functions and the space is ideal if it's really transformative right and I think that's a huge huge ki for folks at home is the ability to make your honor I love the you're here meg card is your is your ah cocktail bar it's the thing you roll in walls on and it's the greeting table when people come in for an event it's right brilliant yeah it has to be everything um yeah and and it's that having that open space um allows you the ability to do that having the higher ceilings gives you the ability to do that and we're going to be talking or remember too so I don't lose everyone we're gonna be talking about kind of the higher thoughts and ideas and stuff you could do in a studio space and I know many of you are like I got ah flash and an umbrella and that's it no worries uh we're going to go there and we're going to build up ah the thing that I want for you to see is that okay here's where I am today my next move may go to hear my next move maybe did this my next modifier might be this one in two years from now I will be thinking about a studio space and for the next two years I'm going to kind of be formulating in my head of what that looks like right so if you're sitting here today and you're like I got fifty cents and a flash in umbrella and that's it you won't be there two years from now if you work hard if you're tenacious if you hustle you'll two years from now you'll be like I'm man I need a studio space what does that look like hopefully this kind of stuff is it will be planting seeds like oh I want to look for this in this kind of square footage in this book about the book all right any other questions before we move on they're coming in uh well goto well let's go with you and we'll uh we'll start with you we'll hit your two questions and we're gonna kind of move on thinking about the person that has the foreigner dollars for square foot studio space like you were talking about when convey like when did you make the justification to step it up was it I'm getting enough business to get a larger space or I'm having tio turn down enough business that I should probably get a larger space I think what was going on in my head was um when I signed the lease on the four hundred square foot little space I could barely afford it like I could just and and it was like we're turning cable off so we could get this space I'm not going and getting a lot anymore so I could have this space and it grew and it grew and it grew to the point in that year's time um okay like I'm easily hitting my rent uh having this space has allowed me to bring in a couple other jobs my first my first kind of a job that came in was about a twenty five hundred dollars job I could not have shot of coffee house um so I used the four hundred dollars a month studio space on and that was all inclusive to accept internet but that was my utilities and then fifty bucks a month for internet into the place so um in my four hundred square foot studio space they got me a twenty five hundred dollar job and that got me another one and I was really struggling like I could get the job done but I was struggling in that little tiny of small of a space and it also came down to the little bit higher end of a client starting to come in into my little tiny space they're used to having a little more space tow work into this is aki is professional photographer welcome to a studio suck it in and like don't move because that's all the space you have I needed somewhere when a client walked in and they're bringing five people with them and their group of people there's nowhere to put five people in my space you know um so I needed a couch in a chair like hey you guys go hang out over there while we do our photo shoot over here instead of y'all line up against the wall while I do my photo shoot right here so it was kind of moving was a natural progression the next space that I took I could barely afford it within a year I was easily making the payments uh some of the chapters would really like to know you know sharing studio space and what do you think about that sharing with other photographers other artists people like I will share my studio space with another photographer if they are specifically needing it fora meeting space um like my buddy mark who I talk about all the time mark climbing um mark the primary uh primary focus of his business is weddings um and sometimes he wants a space where hey you know uh when I meet clients and go over albums and talk about that so so he could have but he has a key to this door and he could have my space at any time for that uh every now and then he might need to do a shooting there and we can schedule that and work around it um I I need my space available to me because I get jobs at the last minute and hey uh could you do this job next tuesday and if I'm in a space with two other photographers um uh well hold on well bill has it you know in the morning and susan has it in the afternoon we'll know can we do it wednesday no it needs to be done tuesday now suddenly I'm scrambling I'm paying rent on a space to shoot and I may be scrambling to have to find a new place to shoot kind of thing um so uh I'm I'm kind of a believer in it's great to share a space if you could break it up with some different disciplines like you and a graphic designer you can feed them work and they could feed you work they don't need this room to shoot in they need an office in a meeting space you need the office in meeting spaces well and you can cohabitate there but if you are ah photographer and if you're getting a space that probably means that you're busy enough to justify it therefore you need that space available to you when you need it um so I don't think I would go into space with another photographer to share unless it was so big that they could be shooting over there and I could be shooting over here and we could both keep a professional atmosphere together for two different clients alright we had one more question we're gonna bundle a couple of them together uh people are asking about the basic color of the walls of and uh basic power recommendations and I realized that would be depend upon space et cetera but if that could be right brought okay uh color of the walls uh the smaller the space gets the dark of the walls need to be all right so you start having like a twelve foot by fifteen foot room you want to start going like dark gray um on the walls you don't want anything really bright you don't have a big bright red wall because as soon as you start blowing off a flash and it hits that wall um it's going to send red light back into your space um the larger your space gets and the further the walls get away from each other um whatever color they can start to go so I'd say that if if your walls are starting to get twenty thirty feet apart from each other uh we keep our walls pretty much all the time white um I can use them as a white background uh my psych wall only goes nineteen feet and then another wall comes out to the side and if I blow enough light into that corner I can extend the white if I need to um and when we have ah like a gallery opening or something like that for an artist um who typically want that kind of classic white wall track lighting kind of set up for that um but our walls are a palette and if we need to paint him for a job and by golly we bust out the paint twelve bucks worth of painting a roller and we change the space um if you're working in a small anything that's less than fifteen feet wide right say start taking your walls a little darker so that you can control bouncing flash that might be going everywhere all right any other questions before we move on oh the power as in like how much juice coming out of the walls correct I don't know I'm not an electrician's um I you know if it's a fifty year old building and and electric hasn't been updated ever you might want to go plug some strobes in before you sign a lease in a pit hit him at full power and if the whole place you know goes down uh I've never had I don't run a brazilian watt seconds of strobe power um I have blown circuits a couple times but I usually blow circuits more when we have like two steamers and three hair dryers going those blow circuits a whole lot faster than my strobes do um and that's just steamers and curling irons and stuff susan zack side and chat is asking if you can't afford a studio especially if you live in a very expensive city what are some alternative ways sits still yet studio type shot um a studio type shot is simply it's going back to that what is a studio it is a floor and a wall florida couple walls and you start looking around where's the floor where's a few walls someplace where you could go work and not get kicked out by security um or at least get an hour's worth of work done before you get kicked out of by security um that studio like shots going to come in from the lighting that you bring and you either bring that in because when we look at a shot so that was shot in a studio a lot of times we're looking at the lighting but if I have a white wall that's in a studio space that I pay rent for or it's a white wall down in a parking deck and I bring a soft box on the parking deck white wall and the soft box on the white wall in my studio I'll take two identical looking pictures you'll look at them and you'll say that was shot the studio and I could say well that one was and that was shot in a parking deck but they look identical because it's the same kind of background for the same lighting conditions right it's a controlled environment with controlled lighting that's a studio um if I was young and single no kids um I would be looking for a space that I could like live up in a little tiny corner um and just the rest of space would be my studio um if I was a young married no kids I'd still be looking for that kind of situation but I would not be looking for a studio work situation with children because you need to build sets and you need stuff and at some point like okay we gotta get the kids out of here because if we look at this set wrong it's going to fall over um we don't need you no one year old being in on it um so yeah hopefully that answers that question it did thank you all right and remember we are in a space that's not my studio but I have to make it my studio

Class Description

If you’re new to studio photography, or even if you’ve been doing indoor shoots for a while, studio lighting can be a real challenge. The sheer amount of gear required and the inherent complexity of the equipment mean that there are always lots of variables—and lots of ways to make mistakes!

This weekend-long course taught by renowned music, editorial and advertising photographer Zach Arias breaks down the technicalities of studio lighting into manageable chunks so you can get a handle on what you need to do in almost any studio situation.

Zach will cover a wide variety of topics, from how to build a studio to shutter and aperture settings to posing groups. By the end of this in-depth course, you’ll have the skills to tackle any type of indoor shoot, whether it’s in a huge warehouse or your spare bedroom.

In this class, you’ll learn how to:

  • Build your studio and buy the right gear for the right price.
  • Create and shoot on a white seamless backdrop.
  • Set your ISO, shutter speed and aperture.
  • Understand depth of field and shooting groups.
  • Do head shots with a beauty dish.
  • Use all sorts of flashes, including strobes and hot shoe flashes, as well as modifiers.
  • Handle multiple shoots at once.


Martin B.

Zack - you're the man inside all of the studio classes !!! I've seen a lot of teachers, which are doing studio classes, but you do this on a very lively manner. I've never seen sudio classes like you do ;-) At fist I like your kind of "Cheap Shots" ... you take great images with a kind of inexpensive gear - especially the one light stories. Most of the other photographers are teaching classes by using a lot of light - you can fix the same shots with only one light *thumbs up*. By my selfe i'm teaching "low budget" stuff, but many people are going the other way ... don't know why. Even the available light is the most powerfull light you can work with. Also my theory fits with your "one light" kind of take this shot. Many people should think about your style of photography and related back to the beginning of photography (Adams, Feininger, ...) ;-) Keep on teaching/living your kind of photography - it's worth it - this class is worth all the money ... and much more !!! Martin (

a Creativelive Student

I'm an alum of both the OneLight DVD and Zack's OneLight in-person class. I pre-purchased this course because I knew it would be amazing. I was a bit worried that there would be overlap from his other course offerings but was pleasantly surprised. I tell every photographer that I meet about Zack, his classes and the wealth of knowledge up for grabs on his blog. If you have never shot in a studio or if you are seasoned pro, I guarantee you'll get more than your money's worth out of this course. Zack's work pays his bills, not the equipment companies. Therefore, he can be up front about his likes and dislikes. Zack also doesn't screw around with people, he's the real deal and tells it like it is. Mark my word, buy this class and get the best ROI of anything else you'll buy this year. Zack has the natural gift of teaching. You'll quickly realize that it's not about the latest and greatest gear, it's about your client's needs and knowing how to find solutions with what you've got. Enjoy.


Excellent class and worth every single penny! I have always been a big fan of Zack both in regards to his quality of work and skill set and who he is as a person. You can watch all the Youtube video tutorials in the world and you will gain some good knowledge, however many are holding back some information they do not want you to know about. This class has taught me so much about lighting where I feel much more confident with the technical side and can focus more on the creative side. Well worth your investment!