For a number of years when I needed to photograph a small item or two I took the object/objects across the back yard and into my studio.

There, after  placing the item to be photographed in the light tent, setting up the studio lights around the tent, taking readings with the meter, setting the camera on the tripod, attaching the cable release , adjusting the focus then firing the lights and making the image I was ready to go back to my office in the house and play with photoshop.

Of course, before so doing I had to pack away the lights, fold up the light tent, a task requiring manual dexterity and memory searching in order to get the tent back into its tiny carry case, close up the tripod and put away the cables.

All this to photograph an oddment or two, a memento, a keepsake  or just an interesting piece off memorabilia.

During the last week or two our weather has been quite miserable to say the least. Tripping through deep frost across to the studio, camera and goodies in hand had very little appeal. Yesterday for example, the frost was thick and at around 8am the temperature outside was minus 2 celsius and would you believe, minus 5 in the studio before the heating was turned on.

That convinced me that for winter at least, an alternative had to be found as I retreated to the house.

Then, as I walked back to our centrally heated home and office,I, like many politicians had a thought bubble.

The office has wide floor to ceiling widows and natural light floods in for most of the day. There are also 6 ceiling downlights with a  fluro light to complement them. Then, in the camera cupboard there is a Manfrotto LED photo light and a couple of Nikon speed lights to boot. Why not use them in combination for lighting and not bother with the studio lights?

Being a bit of a bower bird, I’m loathe to throw anything away and in the cupboard I had the remnants of a grey backdrop from a studio  experiment that went pear shaped. I also had a long cardboard tube that had remained forlornly in a corner waiting to be called into duty.

Not only that, I had my old slide projector stand available and just by chance, a large piece of cardboard, almost 16% grey in colour poked away behind my desk. It was large enough to tuck nicely over the projector stand’s tray.

After a bit of mucking around I hung the makeshift backdrop against the bookcase, placed the projector stand in front and made the images that appear in my recent blog about the folding Nikon mini tripod.

For interest sake I thought you might like to see the set up in the studio, minus the studio lights which are securely locked away, and the improvised turn out here in the office.

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White balance isn’t a problem as RAW provides a nice fixer if things don’t look right. The light tent image was taken under fluro lighting with the suitable WB in camera setting  whilst the office image was made with natural light.

As you can imagine, putting this office set up away is quick and easy meaning She Who Must be Obeyed can quickly get to her computer which you can see in the image’s lower right hand corner.

So, there we are, there are no cold hands and frozen feet from studio time and tranquility pervades Casa Creakingbones.

Hoo roo for now.

PS: my use of the word ‘pervades’ should not be interpreted to mean that my office smells like boiled cabbage.






    1. You are welcome. What you see in the office image is only a part of my book collection. Last year I donated over 600 volumes to charity. The collection is now a little more manageable.

  1. Glad your ingenuity is keeping you warm this winter. Very happy to say it’s summer here (well, in a few days). I had no idea it gets that cold in Australia. I can always count on you for a bit of a geography lesson.

  2. Occasionally in winter we gat down to minus 11C with sometimes a dusting of snow. We live in what is called the Southern Highlands of New South Wales and are only about 3 hours drive from the snowfields. Skiing is only available during winter and you will be amazed to learn that during our winter we have more snow cover than the whole of Switzerland. Not much downhill skiing because our so called mountains are not high by european and USA/Canada standards but our cross country skiing is second to none.

    Summer it’s a different story and here we can get day after day of over 40c.
    Here endeth the first lesson.

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