Monday, September 1, 2008
Hi-Tech Studio: The Greenroom
Creating your own space within your studio benefits clients and art directors and provides a gallery to display your best work
|LEFT: Epson Stylus Pro 3800. RIGHT: Panasonic TH-50PZ850U plasma screen.|
Having your own studio space is a right of passage for many professional photographers, but when you reach this pinnacle of success in your career, creating a studio retreat or greenroom within your studio has benefits you might not have considered. Creating such a space has a threefold advantage. It offers clients who come to your shoot, but don’t necessarily want to be on the set, a high-tech room that still keeps them close to the action. It can serve as a way to keep an art director from breathing down your neck during a shoot. And, perhaps most effectively, it’s a place to show off your best work if you’re pitching a client.
There are considerations for creating a room that’s both elegant and high-tech. It can include everything from an HD plasma or LCD television, which can be connected to your computer network for showing images, to a stereo system that can set the mood for your photo display or match the tempo of the studio shoot taking place outside. Although it may seem superfluous, the extra room serves as a multifaceted observatory for those who may get in the way during a shoot, so making this room as comfortable as possible can make even the most needy client feel relaxed and part of the process.
You also might include comfortable chairs or a sofa, a desk or workstation with a computer connected to your network for image editing, an HD monitor for slideshows, hardware or an external hard drive that allows editors to back up their edits and a high-speed Internet connection and WiFi so people can connect to the web. Convenience and efficiency are paramount, but it’s also important to make it look modern and uncluttered by maximizing the space properly.
The investment will benefit you in the long run even if there’s a significant up-front cost. You’ll be paid back when you have a happy client and a space where you can retreat from the camera.
Anything that’s visually appealing will attract an audience and possibly even land you a new client. Have your best prints professionally framed and mounted on the walls. You can alternate images in digital picture frames.
Light Impressions, a company that sells frame kits and other accessories, offers a variety of products to display inkjet prints. They have tools and supplies to help you “exhibit” your photos with museum quality.
A digital photo frame can create a high-res slideshow of your best work. The Smartparts 32-inch Digital Picture Frame (model SP3200) is an HD frame with 1366 x 768 resolution and a variable-speed slideshow function. The SP3200 can be mounted on a wall with a bracket and even play back video. It accepts multiple memory cards and has a USB 2.0 port so you can link a computer or drop images onto a flash drive and instantly view them.
An HDTV used as a monitor or linked to a computer can serve many purposes in your space. The Panasonic 1080p 50-inch TH-50PZ850U HDTV plasma flatscreen TV features Smart Networking, which lets you connect multiple HD AV devices and control them with one remote. Its built-in photo viewer, called GalleryPlayer, can sync to your computer.
If you’re looking to go even bigger with your pictures, the Canon REALiS WUX10 is a new widescreen LCOS projector (most projectors are LCD- or DLP-based). With full 1080p resolution, it shows video and images with more detail and better color gradations. If you’re projecting images, the WUX10 displays 10-bit color up to 300 feet away. It has a built-in network port for network operation.