Whether you are a photographer turning your home into a studio space or you are having your branding photos taken in your own home, there are a few things you can do to prep the space so you have an amazing branding photography session!
Welcome to my home! I convinced my husband that purchasing furniture perfectly suited for my style of branding photography would be a great idea so I would always have a space to shoot in. I love photographing on location and in other homes, but sometimes my clients don’t have a space of their own that they love. While I’m not over the top in love with our current home, it does have amazing natural light, so I knew it would be a perfect alternative plan for my clients who need it. Plus, it’s pretty cute now!
When prepping your home for your session, you don’t need to go out and purchase new furniture like I did. We literally didn’t have a table or a couch when moved into the space, so they were necessary to purchase. I just made sure I bought pieces that would be good in my photos.
Before every photoshoot I do, I will be hiring a cleaning company to make sure this space is spotless. Before the cleaners come though, I’ll have to do a bit of decluttering, because, well let’s be honest – I live with 3 guys and my boys can’t keep it clean in here!
In your home, put away EVERYTHING you do not need. Hide wires, put away picture frames and random cute. Leave out candles, plants, pillows, throws and other props you may want in (just ask your photographer if they will work).
Create separate spaces for different backgrounds and styles. We have two couches with different color tones, two different chair styles to choose from at our table, and two different studio stools to choose from. I can use all of these in different ways to create new looks for my clients.
Make sure you set aside a space that has a studio like backdrop, or blank wall, for a few photos too. This type of space is essential for a few photos. In fact, many of my clients will use the blank wall/studio style photos as their main headshot image.
Find props like your computer, phone, notebook, favorite mug, dog and any other items you need to show who you are and what you do. I actually forgot to include my camera in these (whoops!). We prep so we don’t forget, friends!
Some of the best props are those that you actually use to do your job. If you do yoga, pull out the mat. If you do taxes, grab Mr. Calculator. These props will tell the story of who you are and what you do in the photos.
Other props that are great are seasonal props like pumpkins or spring flower arrangements. Get-to-know-you props are also great for branding photography sessions. For example, in my photos, I included my art supplies as well as one of my grandfather’s oil paintings. I’ll be able to share these photos on social media to tell about where my passion for art came from. My first camera was my grandfather’s and I still have it (and maybe should have had it in here)! Think about what you want to share and how you can communicate that through props.
If you are the one in the photos, then clothing prep is a must! When planning your wardrobe, it’s best to choose colors that match your brand so you can easily use them across platforms. If you are doing a seasonal session, like this fall session that I did, you may want to consider using colors that represent that season. Here you can see my fall collection. Note that I do not have a lot of patterns or bold prints. I’ve chosen mostly solid items. Bold patterns and prints can pull attention away from you in the photos. Plus, they are difficult to place text over in graphics.
Now you are ready for your branding session!
Here’s a look at how I put all these steps together to create photos of me in our space. This will give you an idea of the variety of images you can get in a small, well planned space. [Yes, I know these are not high quality and your photos will look so much better]