Best Photography Studio Equipment for Beginners and Professional Photographers

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Are you planning to create a new photography studio and you are not sure where to begin? Or do you already own a Photo Studio and you are looking to expand your camera gear and photoshoot equipment?

Either you are a beginner or a professional photographer, choosing the right gear for your photo studio may take a while. You need to research and find out what works best for you and your space for the kind of photography you do!

Before you start looking for camera gear and equipment, you should take a look at what other professionals use in their photo studios. MisterLocation is a great website to check different kinds of spaces either you live in big cities like Berlin, Germany, London, UK, or New York, USA.

After doing your research you will have an understanding of the space and the equipment you need. In this article, you will find tips for beginners and professional photographers on camera gear and all the essential tools a photo studio needs.

Equipment List for Photography Studios

  • Studio space
  • Photography backdrops
  • Cameras
  • Lenses
  • Adjustable lighting equipment kits
  • LED lights
  • Strobes
  • Softboxes & umbrellas
  • Chairs, furniture
  • Computer
  • Printers
  • Website/Portfolio
  • Photo editing software

Now let’s get deeper and explore all the photo studio equipment you will need in your space.  Depending on your budget and your business model, select one that fits your needs.

Photography Studio Equipment for Beginners & Pros

(Complete Guide)

1. Find or Create the Ideal Studio Space

If you’re just beginning your new photography business, you might need to consider starting at your house, your basement, or rent a professional space.

  • Home or Basement (free)
  • Rent space on a budget (from $50 per hour)

The advantage of a professional studio vs a home studio is the amount of the selected photoshoot equipment you can use including better lighting, more backdrop selection, etc.

If you choose to take photos at home, make sure you have plenty of space. Prepare a corner or a room with a clean background, a chair or stool, and good lighting.

DIY Home Photo Studio Product Photography on a Budget!

© Luke Ayers – YouTube Channel

In this YouTube video, Luke Ayers shows how to create a product photography space in your home on a budget! The results are amazing!

DIY Home Photo Studio for Portrait Photography in your Veranda!

© Joshua Maclin – YouTube Channel

This is another DIY Home Photo Studio Project from Joshua Maclin. Check his YouTube video to get some ideas on how to take awesome portrait shots at home for free!

DIY Photo Studio at Home for Black and White Portraits with One Speed Light!

© Sean Tucker – YouTube Channel

Sean Tucker explains how to use a simple photoshoot equipment setup with one light to create incredibly dramatic portrait photos!

With the use of a single collapsable backdrop, one speed light from Godox, and a 55mm  f1.8 by Zeiss mounted on a Sony a7III (which is currently on sale), you can create a stunning looking portrait in your living room!

2. Photography Backdrops for Photo Studios

Choosing a photography backdrop is easy and cheap. You can begin with a plain white all-around backdrop for about $20.

Note: Never pin the backdrop on your wall, you will destroy it. Always use clamps and a backdrop stand to hang it.

Backdrop Stand

Emart Photo Video Studio 10Ft Adjustable Background Stand Backdrop Support System Kit with Carrying Bag

Backdrop Clamps

Heavy Duty Muslin Clamps 4 1/2 inch 6 Pack

White Collapsible Backdrop

Plain White Backdrop 6x9ft

Black Collapsible Backdrop

Neewer 6×9 feet/1.8×2.8 meters Photo Studio 100 Percent Pure Muslin Collapsible Backdrop Background for Photography, Video, and Television

Newborn Backdrops

For newborn photography, you can buy an amazing bokeh photography backdrop. It will make your images look incredible either you photograph babies or animals.

Question: Do the poles show on the sides once the backdrop is up?

Answer: It depends on how much space your subject takes to fit into the frame. Usually, if you use a 50mm or 85mm lens on a full-frame camera you won’t have any issues!

Funnytree 5X7ft Ivory Gold Bokeh Photography Backdrop

KelbyOne. Enhance your newborn photography skills.

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Allenjoy 5x7ft Soft Fabric Abstract Brown Wall with Wood Floor Backdrop for Newborn Baby Photography Kids 1st Birthday Cake Smash Photoshoot Retro Portrait Photos

Abstract Backdrop for Kids and Families

This abstract blue vinyl portrait backdrop is great for family photoshoots! You can place each person in front of the backdrop standing, sitting on the floor, or use stools. The bigger the size, the better the larger the number of people you can include.

BoTong 5x7ft Abstract Blue Vinyl Portrait Backdrop Solid Color Photography Background Baby Headshots Photocall Adult Child Travel Family Newborns Party Decoration

Backdrops for commercial photoshoots

This grunge grey canvas backdrop is suitable for commercial photoshoots and businesses. Make sure to order the exact dimensions you’ll need for your photo studio space.

econious Photography Backdrop, 5x7ft Retro Abstract Black Portrait Backdrops for Photography, Studio Props Photo Backdrops, Resistant Fleece-Like Cloth Fabric, with Rod Pocket (Backdrop Only)

3. Adjustable Lighting Equipment Kits

The YICOE softbox lighting kit is great for creating any kind of light tones you need in your photo studio space. Choose between neutral, warm or cool tones according to the project or subject you’re photographing,

YICOE Softbox Lighting Kit Photography Photo Studio Equipment Continuous Lighting System with 5700K Energy Saving Light Bulb

The Emart photography lighting kit is also suitable for professional use. The adjustable LED lights can direct your tones while they can be used on video footage. They have a dimmer so you can create a dramatic scene and take amazing off-camera flash photos!

Emart Photography Softbox Lighting Kit, Photo Equipment Studio Softbox 20″ x 27″, 45W Dimmable LED with Double Color Temperature for Portrait Video and Shooting

These LED adjustable lighting kits can be controlled through your mobile device. They are easy to install, simple to use, and perfect for photo studios or spaces that need a strong light source.

GVM 3 Pack LED Video Lighting Kits with APP Control, Bi-Color Variable 2300K~6800K with Digital Display Brightness of 10~100% for Video Photography, CRI97+ TLCI97 Led Video Light Panel +Barndoor

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RALENO 800W Softbox Lighting Kit 2X20X28 inch Professional Photography Continuous Lighting Equipment with 2 x 85W E27 Socket 5500K Bulbs for Portraits and Product Shooting

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SAMTIAN 2-Pack 240PCS Dimmable LED Video Light 3200K 5600K Panel Light and 79 Inches Stand Lighting Kit with Remote Control Carry Case for YouTube Studio Photography, Video Shooting, Livestreaming

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Neewer 3 Packs LED Softbox Lighting Kit: 20×27 inches Softbox, 45W Dimmable LED Light Head with 2 Color Temperature, Light Stand, Boom Arm and Sandbag for Photo Studio Portrait Video Shooting

To capture clear photos you will need some form of lighting. But since we are dealing with a limited budget, you may not need to purchase lighting equipment at this stage. Just look for Photoflex reflector and use only one LED light or the natural light within the studio.

Neewer 43 Inch/110 Centimeter Light Reflector 5-in-1 Collapsible Multi-Disc with Bag – Translucent, Silver, Gold, White and Black for Studio Photography Lighting and Outdoor Lighting

In addition to this, you will also need spring metal clamps. The best in the market is the MegaDeal Jaw opening clamp. With these in place, you will be good to launch your basic photo studio business.

Neewer 2-Pack Heavy Duty Metal Spring Clamp Holder with 5/8 inches Stud, Max. 1.96 inches/5 Centimeters Open for Photo Studio Light Stand Boom Arm Reflector Backdrop and More

4. LED lights, Strobes, Softboxes & Umbrellas

Photography Photo Studio Light Stands

Neewer PRO 9 Feet / 260cm Heavy Duty Aluminum Alloy Photography Photo Studio Light Stands Kit for Video, Portrait and Photography Lighting (2 Pieces)

Heavy Duty Sandbags

ABCCANOPY Super Heavy Duty Sandbag Saddlebag Design 4 Weight Bags for Photo Video Studio Stand,Backyard,Outdoor Patio,Sports (Black)

Create a unique atmosphere with color filters!

Emart LED Video Light 11 Brightness/4 Color Filters Dimmable Photography Continuous Table Top Lighting, Adjustable Tripod Stand, USB Portable Fill Light for Photo Studio Shooting

Use continuous lighting with professional studio strobe lights and softboxes!

Neewer Photo Studio Strobe Flash Light and Softbox Lighting Kit:(2)300W Monolight Flash,(2)Light Stands,(2)Softbox,(1)RT-16 Wireless Trigger,(1)Bag for Video Shooting,Location and Portrait Photography

Umbrella lighting kit

LimoStudio Photography Photo Portrait Studio 660W Day Light Umbrella Continuous Lighting Kit, LMS103

Aputure Light Dome II uses industry-grade diffusion material with highly reflective coating. While preserving your light’s original color temperature, these materials turn your hard COB light into a beautiful soft light that provides a very even wrap around your subject, making the Light Dome II the perfect diffuser for portraits, interviews, documentaries, music videos, and narratives

Aputure Light Dome II Softbox for Aputure 120D Mark 2 300D 120D 120T, 35 Inch Deep Octagon Softbox for Aputure 120D Mark 2 Aputure 300D Aputure 120D Aputure 120T and Other Bowen-S Mount Lights

Versatile light for professionals

Aputure 120d II LED Light Ultimate Upgrade 30,000 Lux @0.5m, Supports DMX, 5 Pre-Programmed Lighting Effects 120d Mark 2 Daylight LED with Ginisfoto Cloth

Profoto B10 PLUS

Profoto B10 Plus

Did you know you can use the Profoto B10 Plus with your iPhone?

Photo studio trolley carry bag

Neewer Photo Studio Equipment Trolley Carry Bag 30″x11″x11″/77x28x27cm with Straps Padded Compartment Wheel, Handle for Light Stand, Tripod, Strobe Light, Umbrella, Photo Studio and Other Accessories

5. Chairs, Stools, and Furniture

Photography posing stools and chairs

LimoStudio, AGG2236, Photography Posing Prop Stool, Massage and Salon Style Chair, 14 Inch Diameter, Height Adjustable, Caster Wheel Stool with Large Gray Cleaning Fabric Cloth, Photo Studio

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Baxton Studio Jennifer Modern Lounge Chair with Dark Brown Fabric Seat

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Winsome 24-Inch Square Leg Counter Stool, Black, Set of 2

Newborn photography pillows

Oenbopo Newborn Photography Props Bundle, Baby Photography Basket Pictures DIY Baby Photoshoot for Professional Photos Infant Posing Props

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First Landings Newborn Photography Props | Photo Donut Prop and 3 Posing Pillows | Baby Basket for Pictures | Baby Photography Props for Boy or Girl

Newborn photography bed

Sweetnb Wooden Bed Newborn Photography Prop, Small Furniture for Background Photos and Studio Pictures for Infant Boys and Girls, Cute Natural Wood Cradle (Brown)

6. Cameras, Lenses, and Speed Light Flashes

You don’t need to get the most expensive camera and lenses to take good photos in your photo studio. What you need is to combine quality lenses to your main camera body and learn how to use a Speedlight camera flash!

Basic Camera Setups for Photo Studio 

Get an APS-C or Full-Frame camera and combine it with a good portrait or all-around lens:

Canon EOS Rebel t7 with:

Nikon D3500 with

Sony a6100 / a6400 with

Fujifilm X-T3 with

Sony a7 III with

Canon R6 with

All of these cameras produce exceptional image quality.

Q&A

Do I need to buy a Full Frame camera?

APS-C cameras and lenses are less expensive than Full Frame cameras. You can buy an APS-C camera in the beginning and then, while you build your portfolio and you get more clients, you can upgrade to a Full Frame system.

Which lenses are the best for a photo studio space?

Small photo studio spaces will require you to have a Zoom Lens or focal lengths between 35mm and 55mm while in a bigger studio space you will be able to use 85mm and up.

Also, you can find lenses in the used market for half the price if you research enough and understand what focal length you need for your photo studio.

Which lenses are good for portraits & headshots?

Good looking portraits need at least a 50mm focal length on an APS-C camera body and 85mm on a full-frame body. For full-body shots, you will need 35mm on an APS-C camera body and 50mm on a full-frame camera.

I don’t have money to spend to get more than one lens, what should I do?

If you are just starting your business and building your photo studio, you will need one lens. You can either work with your camera’s Kit Lens or buy an All around lens like a 24-105mm, 18-105mm, 18-135mm. If you understand how to use a flash Speedlight with one of these lenses, you will get great photos!

7. Camera Tripods for Photo Studio

Tripods are essential for a photo studio! You should invest in a good tripod that can hold your camera steady. For example, this Geekoto tripod is great for beginners and also not that expensive!

GEEKOTO 77” Tripod, Camera Tripod for DSLR, Compact Aluminum Tripod with 360 Degree Ball Head and 8kgs Load

Aluminum Tripods

Joilcan 80-inch Tripod for Camera, Aluminum Tripod for DSLR,Monopod, Lightweight Tripod with 360 Degree Ball Head

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Manfrotto Compact Light Aluminum 4-Section Tripod Kit with Ball Head, Black

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K&F Concept 62” DSLR Tripod, Lightweight and Compact Aluminum Camera Tripod with 360 Panorama Ball Head Quick Release Plate

Carbon Fiber Tripods

Neewer Camera Tripod Monopod Carbon Fiber with Rotatable Center Column – Portable Lightweight, 72.4 inches/184 Centimeters, 360 Degree Ball Head

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GEEKOTO 79 inches Carbon Fiber Camera Tripod Monopod with 360 Degree Ball Head 1/4 inch Quick Shoe Plate

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Neewer 66 inches/168 centimeters Carbon Fiber Camera Tripod Monopod with 360 Degree Ball Head, 1/4 inch Quick Shoe Plate

8. SD Cards

Alongside the camera, you will also need to purchase an SD card to store your photos. The most reliable SD cards are:

PNY SD Cards

 

PNY 512GB Elite-X Class 10 U3 V30 SDXC Flash Memory Card – 100MB/s, Class 10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, Full HD, UHS-I, Full-Size SD

 

PNY 128GB Elite Performance Class 10 U3 SDXC Flash Memory Card

 

PNY 16GB Performance Class 4 SDHC Flash Memory Card 5-Pack, Model: P-SDHC16G4HX5-MP

 

PNY 128GB Elite-X Class 10 U3 V30 microSDXC Flash Memory Card – 100MB/s, Class 10, U3, V30, A1, 4K UHD, Full HD, UHS-I, microSD

 

PNY 128GB Premier-X Class 10 U3 V30 microSDXC Flash Memory Card – 100MB/s, Class 10, U3, V30, A1, 4K UHD, Full HD, UHS-I, Micro SD

 

PNY 256GB PRO Elite Class 10 U3 microSDXC Flash Memory Card

Choose one with at least 32GB of space. You will need to shoot in RAW, so make sure you have plenty of space or extra cards. You will also need a card reader to help you transfer the photos from the SD card to your computer.

9. Create your Website or Portfolio

Creating a website for your photography business is essential. Here are the steps on how to do it successfully:

  • Buy a Domain Name.
  • Sign up for FREE on Squarespace, one of the most popular website platforms in the world for photographers, creators, and eCommerce.
  • Hire a web designer on Fiverr.com to help you create a professional design!
  • Register your Photography Business in Google Business.
  • Contact me johnmakphotography(at)gmail(dot)come to help you with content and SEO in order to rank your website #1 in Google.

10. Choose a Printer

Printing is another part of your photo studio business. You need to be able to make prints for your clients. Here are the top 5 printers for a photo studio in the market:

Canon IPF 4000

Canon IPF 770

Epson SureColor P800

Canon Pro 1000

Canon Pro 9000

11. Computers (PC, Laptop, Mac)

For those who want to store and edit a large number of images, you will need the proper computer to handle those heavy-duty tasks. Remember, for editing photos you need a good CPU, a fast SSD, and Hard Disk Drives to Store and Backup your images.

Loading files in Photo Editing Apps can take time if you use Hard Disk Drives. You can either buy new SSD drives or the new M.2 flash drives that are 4x times faster than SSDs! I have created a page with the best SSD for Photoshop and Lightroom if you want to check.

Here are my top 5 computer recommendations for photo studio:

iMac Pro 27″ 5K Retina Monitor (10-core Xeon, 32GB RAM, AMD Radeon Pro Vega 56 graphics with 8GB, 1TB SSD)

iMac 27″ 5K Retina Monitor (i5 10th Gen 3.3GHz 6-Core, 8GB RAM, AMD Radeon Pro 5300 graphics, 512GB SSD)

Apple Macbook Pro 16″ Retina (i7 9th Gen 6-Core, 16GB RAM, AMD Radeon Pro 5300M Graphics, 512GB SSD)

DELL Inspiron 7790 – 27″ Inch All In One FHD Touch, Intel Core i7, 16GB Memory, 512GB Solid State Drive + 1TB HDD

HP 24 Pavilion All-in-One PC, 10th Gen Intel i7-10700T Processor, 16 GB RAM, Dual Storage 512 GB SSD, and 1TB HDD.

12. Photo Editing Software

The majority of photographers use Adobe Creative Cloud. There are many other options in the market but choosing to edit your photos with the most popular photo editing apps in the market will help your business be more compatible!

The Adobe Creative Cloud for Photographers Includes:

  • Lightroom
  • Lightroom Classic
  • Photoshop on desktop and iPad
  • 20GB of cloud storage (1TB available).

Conclusion

You don’t need all this equipment to start a photo studio. You can start with a simple backdrop, one light, a good camera with a flash, a tripod, and you’re ready to go. Just remember, when you are about to shop any of this equipment, always keep an eye for quality. Do your research, ask for recommendations, read customer reviews, and check for prices.

It might take a while to develop the style you want and get the right equipment. My advice to you is to keep up the good work, always improve your photography skills and share your photos on social media like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and your website.

Did you like this page? It would mean the world if you could share it with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest. If you are interested in a specific item or have a question, please leave a comment and I will get back to you as soon as possible. :O)

Leave a comment

4 Replies to “Best Photography Studio Equipment for Beginners and Professional Photographers”

  1. Thanks for this article… Hope to get more from you. Because I want to start photography studio business

    1. Thank you, Christopher. I have updated the article and I will write more about photo studio equipment. Would you be interested in something specific? Please let me know how I can help!

    1. Hello Olga, thank you for your kind words! I have updated the article including a few printer options. Let me know if you need anything specific! Thanks again!

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