How to choose the correct photography studio for rental in Cape Town

Choosing the correct photography studio is important when you have a shoot that requires certain lighting and backgrounds to suit your brief and your clients needs.

There are a variety of requirements that a photographer might need to fulfill in order to meet the brief, so selecting the appropriate photography studio is key in order to ensure that the shoot meets the clients expectations without encountering problems from the start, especially once the photographer has secured the work and paid for the hire of the studio for the photo shoot.


Location and parking

Make sure that the studio is located in an area that is convenient for travel by all involved parties. The studio will need to be close to public transport points, as well as reachable when navigating using Google maps app. Depending on the size and requirements of the shoot, you might need parking facilities for off loading props, products or garments. Parking is normally required off street or private garage facility depending on the security aspect and the type of garments that need to be delivered to the studio. Remember outdoor parking and bad weather need consideration, as you want the client and the rest of the team to be as relaxed as possible before the shoot starts.

Inspect the studio before confirming the rental

It is important when sourcing the photo studio to firstly ensure that it is equipped with everything that you require for the shoot. Being caught with issues at the time of the shoot, not only is stressful to all, but costs money and time, with the dreaded thought of having to reschedule the shoot at a different studio, and, no doubt losing the client in the process, not the way to go… When you believe that you have selected a studio in mind the might work, make an appointment to view, first tick off what is on the list that is required and set a time to inspect it meets your expectations for the job. As there are a number of photography studios, be aware that what you read and see online, or what you are told over the phone, as it might tell a different story to what you expect.

Seeing is believing…

Make sure that there is Wi-Fi and a fast bandwidth so client is able to be connected and live through the shoot. This will apply to the photographer that might be shooting wireless tether.


What to look for when choosing the right studio space for a photography shoot – questions to answer on your list:

Size and shape:

Is the studio large enough for the photo shoot?

Will the studio be able to accommodate the full client compliment, the models, extras, props and product ranges with ease of movement? (Cramped space is problem as it effects not only the photographer, but also all parties involved in the shoot – space is key).



Is there a kitchen area in the studio?

Most shoots will require kitchen area for preparation and serving of refreshments, so make sure to check this, cleanliness, cutlery, crockery and a fridge will be your most important requirements.

Does the studio have a clean and hygienic bathroom, which is private, not public?

Does the studio have a makeup area dedicated for the models?

There should be a professional set up with lighting and a mirror for the make up artist to perform their task. Even or natural light is good as make up artists prefer this source of lighting.

Is there a changing area that is private with clothing rails to hang the garments and steam, if necessary?


Now for the studio space and the equipment

Firstly, the lighting situation, do you require studio and/or good natural light? This is essential as it will affect the set up and determine the ‘end result’ of each image that is captured. Most studios will have a decent size infinity curve that is wide enough to cater for the shoot as well as ample height to accommodate the composition and the nature of the shoot in order to avoid any distortion or limits to lens choice, as certain each style, or shoot theme will require a specific lens with a specific range.

Ensure that the curve has space on each side to provide opportunity to move lights freely to the correct positions to achieve the desired lighting.

The range, or distance that the photographer has in terms of distance to shoot from is also important, normally, no less than 6 meters.


Does the studio include equipment and studio gear in the rental?

Most credible photo studios will include various backdrops as well as professional lighting and reflector boards. Make sure that your camera is able to sinc with the lighting as this could become embarrassing and you will seem unprepared. Be familiar with the lighting as well as the soft boxes and diffusers before the shoot. Lastly, ensure that there are enough lights and softboxes before the shoot to finish the shoot without hiccups or issues. Just a tip for convenience, try ensure that the studio lights have transmitters and receivers, not cables, as cables are cumbersome.


The rate and the costs:

Always pay close attention to the budget when quoting on a job, especially when a studio is part of the plan, you do not want to be caught short and have to ask the client to folk out more money for something that you have overlooked.

Photographic studios should also have package rates for hourly, half day and full day shoots, best to ask this first before committing.


Well, now that you have a few pointers to look out for, I trust this will help and assist in make the right choice.