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Building an in-house studio...

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Mike Little
Building an in-house studio...
on May 15, 2012 at 4:42:40 pm

Hi! I have been doing some light video work for my company for a couple of years. I usually just go into someone's office and they talk about something important to our clients, I edit it a bit, then it goes up on YouTube or Vimeo. Simple stuff. I am very self taught in doing all of this.

Recently, some rooms were vacated and my boss wants to turn the space into a small studio. The new studio room was a server room. 8ft drop ceiling, tile floor and a wicked echo. Around 630 sq. ft. of space for the studio.

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I'm not really sure where to start on this. Most of the time there will just be someone sitting at a desk talking about industry news. I was thinking of putting in curtains, carpeting, paint the walls white, maybe get a nice fabric green screen...

It looks like I need some resources. Can you suggest some web sites or publications I could read? Or maybe some suggestions on how I could proceed. I am allowed to drop some cash, on upgrading my camera, lighting, etc., but my budget also includes getting this space shaped up.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

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Joseph W. Bourke
Re: Building an in-house studio...
on May 16, 2012 at 1:03:11 am

Here's a short article to get you started thinking about the issues you'll need to deal with:

Focal Press has a book on just about any phase of the process you could imagine.

Joe Bourke
Owner/Creative Director
Bourke Media

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Mark Suszko
Re: Building an in-house studio...
on May 17, 2012 at 1:05:36 pm

Don't paint the walls white. You want flat black or at least neutral gray. Black keeps down stray light reflection and lets you also shoot limbo shots. Gray is almost as good, also you can wash gray walls with a colored gel light or gobo and make the wall any color or pattern you need it to be, without keying.

Your big expenses here will be soundproofing the rooms, hanging lights in that space, managing adequate electrical power, and keeping it ventilated. Going with all-flo lighting (LED's are more expensive) will keep those costs down.

Pulling out at least some of the overhead tile will gain you a little space, better than nothing. It helps that your main set is a desk. But for the chromakey wall (and floor), you'll want the additional height available.

Looking at that floor plan, if you set up to use the room on the diagonal, you get a bit more distance between camera and talent and background, all of which helps with creating a short depth of field effect.

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