DIY Photo Studio Guide: How To Set One Up

Do you want to set up your photo studio?

Having your own photo studio will help your business grow. It would help open up a lot of opportunities.

A photo studio will help you work at your convenience. You don’t need to carry large equipment and photography gear to any rented studio. Are you looking for a DIY photo studio guide to get some ideas to set your studio?

If you capture many portraits of people, then setting up your photo studio will be a great option. It will help save a lot of money. You can capture good quality pictures at your convenience. Let us look at some DIY photo studio guide that will help you set your studio with ease.

Photo Studio Setup

Before setting up your Photo studio, you need to think of what kind of studio you want. You need to be clear on the type of photography you want to go with. Make sure to build the type of studio you would like to have. Please don’t waste your money on setting a studio that won’t serve your needs at all.

If you do many group photoshoots, then a small studio will not be a good option. You need to be clear on the type of space you want according to your needs. If you are setting a photo studio at your home, try getting a more prominent space for your shoot.

If your main business is shooting newborns, then you will need a small space. You can set a small space for it as you want.

You can create your style for your studio. If your space can get some natural light, it will be great. Else you can set up the lighting and other gears for some excellent quality pictures. Make sure the photo studio you set up serves the needs and will help your business grow.

Equipment Needed For Setting Up A Photo Studio

Once you have figured out the space for setting up your photo studio, you need to think of the necessary equipment.

Setting Up A DIY Photo Studio

Lighting Setup

One of the main things to consider while setting your photo studio is the lighting. A small studio setup will mainly require either a flashgun or a reflector.

If you want to set a more advanced studio with better lighting, you can have two to three light stands. By this, you can get good portrait lighting set up in your own space. Having a good lighting setup will help give some significant effects to your pictures.

You can test the lighting by conducting a photo session with your friends or family. You can understand the lighting effect of your DIY Photo studio setup. You can see from which place the picture comes out perfect and looks great.


Speedlights are great for studios as they take up less space. They are lightweight as compared to flashlights. If you need to make some changes to your photo studio for some shots, you will easily place your Speedlight elsewhere,.

Speedlights are perfect for keeping at a small photo studio because of their compact size.

A Speedlight by Neewer is affordable and compatible with most DSLRs. It has multiple flash modes and is great for photo studios. You can try and test how your Speedlight works and how you will need to set your camera.

Neewer Flash Speedlite
Compatible with DSLRs with standard hot shoe and has multiple flash modes.

Using Flashgun

If you go for flashguns, it will be more powerful than a Speedlight. Using a flashgun, you will get a crisp and sharp picture. Flashguns are perfect for a photo studio setup. You can capture little moments of your clients faster than speedlights.

Flashguns are portable and easy to carry around. It is very comfortable to have a flashgun while taking group pictures. You can click several photographs and then select your best shots out of them. A modeling light will also work great for group pictures.

Flashguns are more expensive than speedlights. So it is important to plan your budget before making a purchase.

Choosing A Background

You need to choose different types of background that you can use for different types of photography. A black and white background is a must-have in a photo studio. It is the most common background used for portrait photography. Keep adding different background rolls as per the need. Getting background support will be beneficial.

Get A Lighting Stand

Having a light stand in a photo studio is excellent. If you have suitable space to work with a three-point light stand, it will be great to have.

A light stand is a bit expensive for a photo studio setup but is very beneficial for portrait photography. Overall it will be worth it when you see the results.


Modifiers give some significant effects to your pictures and are great to have in a photo studio. There are different types of modifiers. You need to select the one according to your need. Think of what kind of pictures you will be clicking and what effects you want to give. Then choose a modifier accordingly.

Let us look at different modifier options:

  • Reflectors. Reflectors come with different reflecting surfaces. Reflectors can give a great glow to the pictures. If you use a gold reflector, it will provide a warm effect to the picture. It will make people think it’s sunlight.
  • Umbrellas. Umbrella will help diffuse the extra light that is being exposed. Umbrellas are good to keep in a large photo studio. In a small space, it won’t be able to give the effect as a softbox can.
  • Softbox. Softbox helps reduce shadows from the pictures. It helps diffuse the light and make it look even and soft. Softbox comes in different sizes. You can choose as per your need. With a bigger softbox, you will get a softer light. Make sure to place the softbox away from the subject to give an even effect.
  • Gels. You can add some colorful sheets of paper to provide some creative and cool effect to the pictures. Like an orange gel will give a warm effect to the picture. Gels are very affordable and help create different effects. You can keep some cool colored gel papers in your photo studio and use them as per the need.

Folding Table To Place Your Product

You will need a folding table and place the backdrop across. Place the product accordingly. Make sure not to put the product too high or too low, so it’s easy to take pictures. Having a folding table is easy to set up and is convenient.

DIY Photo Studio Set-Up Guide

#1 Set Up Table and Window

First, you need to set up a table. Place it near the window to get some natural light on the subject. Make sure you are not getting direct sunlight on the subject.

You need to make sure to place the table in such a way so that you can move around and style the table with ease for shoots.

#2 Use A Plain White Backdrop

Use a white backdrop roll and paste it on the wall using tape. You can paste it to the ceiling or hang it on a stand. Pasting it to the top will make the backdrop fall nicely on the table. You can paste the sides of the backdrop so it doesn’t move while keeping any object.

DIY Photo Studio Set-Up Guide

You can also use your wall as your backdrop. Paint it with some neutral color to get started with. This way, it will be easy to organize and place objects for the shoot.

#3 Lighting

You need to set up the lighting as per your need. Place one light at around 45° from your subject. If you are using some natural light from outside, make sure to place the subject accordingly. You can use a reflector as extra lighting. It will help reflect light on the darker side of the subject.

#4 Place The Object Or The Product

First, you need to clean the backdrop. Then place the product you need to click the picture of.

A little cleaning of the backdrop will help reduce the post-editing work. If you are taking pictures of gems or jewelry, make sure it is properly polished and clean.

If you are taking pictures of any footwear, make sure it is properly polished, and there is no dust over it. This will help in reducing your editing work and save your time.

Make sure to place the product in the center of the backdrop and click pictures accordingly. Try taking pictures from different angles. And when you turn your product, make sure the camera and tripod are at the same place. It will help keep your photos consistent.

#5 Using White Foam Board

You can use a white foam board for your DIY photo studio to get even light on both sides of the shooting product. If you are shooting any black object, you will need some extra “fill light” to get accurate details and texture of the product.

You can place the foam board vertically using tape. Make sure to put it opposite the window. The foam board should be larger than the product you are shooting.

#6 Place Your Tripod And Camera

Position your tripod correctly according to the height of the table. Level your tripod and then attach your camera and clip it.

Once the camera is attached, start clicking pictures. Position your tripod in different places and look through the camera towards the product. Adjust the camera position and make sure the product is placed at the center.

You can increase the tripod’s height if you want to take pictures of the product from top to bottom. You can use the camera lens to zoom.


Studio Kits For Photography

After looking at different equipment and things needed for setting up a photo studio, you may be wondering if you can get a kit containing all the necessary things in one place. This depends on your budget and the style you want to set.

If you buy individual pieces, you may end up spending more. There are different types of studio kits available nowadays. If you are setting up a studio all by yourself, then getting a studio kit will help you a lot.

A studio kit by Neewer has all the necessary equipment for a home photo studio. The kit contains a light stand, umbrella, light holder, backdrop, and a softbox.

Neewer Studio kit
Indoor photography studio kit with all necessary equipment

Tips for DIY Photo studio

If you have a small space to set up a photo studio, you can still set it correctly by placing the necessary gears. Let’s look at some valuable tips for setting up a photo studio.

  • Try to keep just one or two extra lights. Use the natural light coming from the window as much as possible. Don’t fill all the space by placing lighting stands and equipment.
  • You can use reflectors for portrait photography. It helps diffuse the light and the shadow and makes the picture look good. Try using reflectors from different angles and see how the picture comes out even in a small space.
  • Ensure you are using the correct camera lens according to the studio space and type of picture you are clicking. You won’t need to use zoom if it’s a small studio. A good quality lens will help capture the picture of your subject from the available distance.
  • Photoshoots are a tiring job at the end of the day. Having those warm lights around will make you uncomfortable after a point in time. So make sure to give some refreshments to your clients, so they don’t feel tired soon.
  • Make sure to place a mirror somewhere on the wall. It’s nice to quickly have a look and do some quick make-up before the photoshoots.


To set up a DIY photo studio, you need to be as creative as you can. Use all the necessary equipment according to your need. Remember, having your photo studio will help your business grow with time. Keep adding new equipment and backdrops to your studio as your business grows.

I hope the above DIY photo studio guide will help set up your photo studio with ease.

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