I used the idea of a book for my header since this challenge is going to be a journal of my life over the years.
I hope you enjoy viewing these pages of my life as they unfold. I know I will...

Friday, February 25, 2011

One Not So Tiny Problem

Even though I got the room all cleaned out, there is still TONZ to do. Today I laid some wood flooring in one section and got a few backdrops hung. Fun Fun!! I am having one major problem. I have no way to heat the room. It's a huge room with not much insulation and no heating ducts. For most shoots that is fine but for newborns it's a nightmare. The studio has to be so hot I'm sweating for it to be warm enough for a brand new baby with no clothes on. Any ideas? Anyone that solves my problem gets a free mini shoot in my studio :)

A few things to consider -
The ceilings are 12 ft high and metal.
There is no windows or ventilation in the room.
It's a huge room (size of a 3 car garage).


AngryGardner said...

I'll take a shot at it.

Curtains and a Super Bowl.


Ok I realize this not the best idea. But the idea is to figure out a way to heat a smaller area. Then space heaters will work well. Otherwise they just can't keep up with a space as large as yours. I'll keep thinking for its worth.

Tiffany Reed Photography said...

Okay I'm not totally sure how this would work, but it's basically off of Angry Gardner's idea. I thought of this and jumped off the couch really quickly to tell you.

What if you either hung foam boards (in sections) from hooks on the ceiling that could be taken down when needed to make a smaller space. Then bring a space heater into the smaller blanket space (while supervising of course) and heat that baby up! No pun intended. LOL

The cool thing about the foam board is that you could probably get some cool paper on there and use it as a portable backdrop with various patterns, colors etc.

If the ceiling had eye hooks, and the foam boards had corresponding hooks, it would be easier to trap the heat in, take them up and down and light weight.

Cherylann Collins said...

What about an electric fireplace? I don't know how much those cost, and I don't know how efficient they are compared to regular space heaters. The Amish fireplaces I've seen on TV come to mind. (I have no clue if those are good or not, I'm not endorsing any particular brand). But something along that line would look nice.

And -- a heating pad under the blankets that are under baby.

Jules said...

Heat packs! You know those 18 hour packs that you can buy for emergencies? Stick a few of those under baby and "voila!" Warm baby! Looks great!

M said...

My first thought was that Dave Hobby (of Strobist) recently blogged about converting his garage into a studio, and he ran into the same basic problem as you: how to heat something that isn't well-insulated or connected to your home's heating.

He went with a portable propane heater, for about $130. He said 20 minutes is enough to go from bitter cold to usable; it sounds like your studio is already better than bitter cold, so hopefully it would get warm enough for newborns!

JeremyHall said...

I have an electric heater my mom bought several years back for her condo that works surprisingly well in a big room. I use it for my basement office in the winters to take the edge off without having to heat the entire basement. You are welcome to give it a try to see if it does the job, then look for something similar. It rolls easily into place, so you can direct it to a specific area to heat up faster, plus it is a box that is shielded so there are no hot parts to touch. I can send a pic if you like.

Rebecca White said...

We have a friend who uses an infrared heater to keep his office warm. Hubby thinks it covers about 500 sq ft or so, he can't remember. I've heard of others using the same type of heaters and they love it. I don't remember what brand they use though. My little studio doesn't get much heat in it so I use an oil space heater and heating pad to help keep the baby warm. The space heater works great for small areas. So, that could be an idea: a couple infrared heaters to get the room warmed up, a space heater closer to the area where you will be photographing the baby and the heating pad for under the baby.

Matthew Mitchell said...

There are small, electric, radiant heaters that look similar to a fan that are great for newborns. You can use them fairly close to the baby and the heat is kind of concentrated at whatever you point it at. Another help is a heating pad under the baby's blanket/background. That is a good trick to help them stay asleep. Last, a hair blower works really well on newborns. Sounds nuts, but they like not only the heat, but the sound seems to kind of keep them in a sleepy state. These are all ways to heat the infant without really making you and the rest of the room an oven.

Good Luck,
Matt Mitchell

Richard Smothers said...

I hear the Amish are giving away free fireplaces...too bad there's a strict limit of two per household.

Belinda said...

You might already have decided what you're going to do to warm up your studio. If not, here's my idea and hopes of a mini session with you!

I would put in an electric fireplace like this: http://www.air-n-water.com/product/fa9286e.htm

It comes in various colors. I like the fact that a white one wouldn't add a color cast. This particular model has safety features like cool glass so if a child touched it they wouldn't get burned.

To get the most out of the fireplace you could:

-add comfortable chairs and have it be a waiting area for parents during a session

-shooting area for clients that want a varied look. This could be redecorated for every season to make it a 'limited edition' backdrop

-display your work and use it as a wall hanging inspiration area to give your clients ideas of how to hang their images and scale of print size

Whatever you choose to do it will be beautiful!