A few months ago, a friend of mine asked if I would be willing to take pictures of her son for his 1st birthday. Of course my answer was HELL YEAH! I was so excited! This would be the first time I photographed other children besides my own and people who aren’t family. I was pumped but nervous.
On top of that we were going to do a cake smash session.. which ideally needed to be inside (Insert worried face). Where in the world in my house was I going to do that?? Normally I’m a natural light photographer and my house is unfortunately aligned so that we barely get any natural light in through the windows. Thus I had to brush up on my flash skills and get to work on creating a studio area.
In comes my old google skills…. I found this great tutorial on building a little PVC pipe frame for a backdrop. So off to Lowes I went to get all my supplies and with the help of my husband, I had a stand. Only thing I needed was the actual cloth backdrops. After searching multiple places that didn’t have wide enough fabric.. I ended up a JoAnn. The challenging thing was picking fabrics that you thought would look good and in materials that aren’t going to wrinkle too bad.
Last but not least I needed some flooring. We do have wood flooring on our 1st floor but I had a vision of something darker or even a hint of red. So after a ton of pricing wood and fake floor from every place I could find. We ended up getting a piece of vinyl flooring cut from Home Depot. It cost about $50 but was the cheapest I could find without getting something ugly. Plus the benefit of the vinyl is that when i was done I could just roll it and store for next time.
When it came to picking a location in my house.. I decided on setting up in our kitchen. I just had to move the kitchen table out-of-the-way so minimal furniture to move. Then I setup with the backdrop facing the large window we have there. This helped get some natural light and then I supplemented with a flash bouncing off the corner of the wall. I had an umbrella and softbox available but since it’s a soon to be 1-year-old I decided to bounce the light instead. I had flash to my left and large reflector to my right and window behind me. It worked out PERFECT!
Here is a pullback of my setup:
Here are a few shots that I took during the session..