Address: 6063 W. Sunset Boulevard, Hollywood, CA
Contact Info: Monica@sirenstudios.com
Length of Time in Business: July 2010
What Makes it Unique: Vector Foiltex’s Texlon windows for diffused daylight and insulation
Quote from Photographer: “Each floor has a huge corner of floor to ceiling, southwest and west exposure walls of beautiful diffused daylight, unmatched in the industry here in L.A.,” says Steve Erle, owner of Steve Erle Photography.
This four-level, 20,000-square-foot boutique studio was designed to bring to L.A. what didn’t exist there previously—a full-service experience with daylight space in a central location. Featuring a roof deck with an unobstructed view of the iconic Hollywood sign, Siren Studios delivers.
“I’m excited to show my clients what’s finally available in Los Angeles,” says photographer Steve Erle who has shot in the space since its July opening. “Not only does Siren have the most sought after location—being on Sunset Blvd. in the heart of au courant Hollywood—but it is the first and only true daylight studio in L.A.”
Three unique studios ranging from 3,000 to 6,000 square feet feature Vector Foiltec’s Texlon windows stretching 60’x15’ around the southwest corner of the building. Having the appearance of giant opaque bubbles, the windows are made of the same recyclable and energy-efficient material used to construct Beijing’s Olympic Bird’s Nest and Watercube.
“The incredibly durable structures diffuse the Southern California sun for nonparallel light and insulation,” says Monica Macdonald, Siren’s director of sales and production.
Siren’s 2,000 square-foot roof deck features an industrial kitchen with sliding glass-door access to an attached indoor studio. Its ground floor is valet-attended with a private parking and loading level to accommodate the needs of an entire crew with ample space for trucks, lifts for cars and a freight elevator for gear.
“With a staff and team that have a combined 40-plus years in the business, we painstakingly created the entire building for the realities of shooting,” Macdonald says.
Rates range from $1,500 to $4,000 per day.
Address: 8000 Biscayne Boulevard, Miami, FL
Contact info: Presscott McDonald (303) 759-9904
Length of Time in Business: March 2010
What Makes it Unique: 7,200 square feet of outdoor space featuring a sun deck and a swimming pool.
Located in Miami’s MiMo district amidst 30 blocks of 1950s motels and other “Miami Modern” buildings is Glasshaus Studios. The space was acquired by Carlos Suarez, former creative director of Ocean Drive magazine, in April ‘09, and underwent $250,000 worth of renovations before opening to rave reviews earlier this year.
“We have refurbished the window framework, the floors, kitchen and the make-up/holding space,” says Glasshaus Studios Manager Presscott McDonald.
Today Glasshaus features 4,000 square feet of light-flooded interior space with a 30’x28’ corner cyc and open glass exposure to the east, west and north. Inhabiting 7,200 square feet of outdoor space is a sundeck and swimming pool. Plans for additional daylight shooting space on the 8,000 square-foot rooftop will provide photographers with 360 degrees of unobstructed blue sky views.
“There will be a revolving platform and wall that photographers can use to chase the sun,” explains McDonald. Glasshaus’ styling/production area features a full kitchen, coffee maker, two bathrooms with showers, a hair and makeup area, WiFi, iMac and printer. Its second-floor location ensures privacy for high-profile clients and events. The studio also features secure parking. Rates for still photo shoot start at $1,900 including interior and exterior space. Film and video shoots start at $2,250 plus electrical fees.
Exposure Place Studios moved from downtown Boston to its new digs in Waltham, Massachusetts last April. Also taking part in the move was EP Levine, Boston’s oldest professional camera store. Its photographic department is attached to the studio that is a 10-minute cab ride from Logan International Airport.
“EP Levine rents everything you need for your photo shoot,” says co-owner Mike Bard. “Bring the talent and photographer and we can supply all the necessary gear along with the studio space.”
A double-corner cyc wall allows for seamless shooting from several angles in Exposure Place’s Studio A—a 35’x65’ space with 16-foot ceilings. A client suite greenroom, WiFi access and Foba Camera Stands are also available. The space rents for $1000 a day or $600 per half day.
Drive-in access will soon be available. “We built this studio with extra wide doors and a straight shot to our loading dock where we will be installing a drive-up ramp,” adds Bard. “We have already lined up a couple Ferrari owners as well as several other classic car owners who are anxious to roll their cars in to be photographed.”
Studio B features a full kitchen for food shoots. The 30’x28’ space also has 16-foot ceilings. Its spaces range from $400 a day or $1,000 per half day of full day. Address: 3144 West Carroll Avenue, Chicago, IL
Contact info: email@example.com
Length of Time in Business: September 2009.
What Makes it Unique: Side-by-side cycs.
Quote from a photographer: “I’d love to use the space again,” says commercial photographer Joel Grimes. “I’d highly recommend it.”
Chicago’s Rural Studios opened earlier this year to fill a dearth in the market. Renting for $550 for an entire day, the space with exposed brick, steel beams and cement floor not only fits within a variety of budgets but within artistic visions as well.
“We thought the downturn in the economy was a great opportunity to present a new alternative to existing studios,” says Seth Henrikson of Rural Studios. “One that would offer great space at rates that accommodate today’s budgets.”
Photographers who choose Rural have 7,000 square feet of raw space with 13-foot ceilings, 2 cycs (one white 12’x30’x20’ and one green, 12’x18’x15’) and south-facing windows across the entire studio at their disposal. A patio off the studio features a kitchen and client lounge. A stereo and HD projection are also available.
“The studio has endless potential to create whatever environment one wants with so much open space,” says Henrikson.
Rural Studios’ central location is also a big plus says commercial photographer Joel Grimes who recently shot there with Devin Hester of the Chicago Bears for Red Bull. “I’ve been in studios where it was hard to find or in a back alley somewhere and you’d need 50 people to guide you to the door,” he says. “But this was easy to find, it was clean and everyone was very helpful.”
Grimes is also a fan of the side-by-side cycs. “I’ve rented a lot of spaces and you have to specify ahead of time what you want whether it's a green screen or whatever,” he says. “Here they have two side by side and I’d never seen that before. I thought that was kind of nice.”
Address: 3144 West Carroll Avenue, Chicago, IL
Address: 131 North Fourteenth Street, Brooklyn, NY
Contact info: Kip@driveinstudios.com
Length of Time in Business: July 2009
What Makes it Unique: Combination of East and West coast vibes.
DRIVEIN24’s year-old Root [Brooklyn] studio encompasses a 20,000-square-foot, single story warehouse and 1,000 square feet of outdoor space. Although it’s situated in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, it incorporates both an East and West coast vibe with the high-end feeling of a studio in Manhattan and the size, layout and accessibility characteristic of a space in L.A.
“It has the combined feeling of a studio from Los Angeles or New York but it’s in Brooklyn,” says Managing Director Kip McQueen of the studio that caters to the influx of photographers who’ve relocated to the neighborhood.
Boasting four separate studios and amenities like rolling racks, steamers, WiFi, a 24-inch iMac computer and stereo system with iPad capability, Root [Brooklyn] panders to a range of clientele. The 24-hour full-service space has equipment on location and a full bar for events.
"Rates begin at $1,400 per 10-hour day, but are flexible," says McQueen.
Address: 1050 West Nickerson Street, Seattle, WA.
Contact info: firstname.lastname@example.org
Length of Time in Business: July 2009
What Makes it Unique: One of the largest independently owned studios on the West Coast
A host of new services were born when VODA Studios—having outgrown its previous space—moved to its new digs one year ago. At 18,600 square feet its bigger home makes it one of the largest independently owned studios on the West Coast.
“We were busting at the seams of our previous studio space, renting another overflow studio and having to rent office space for our digital groups and pre-media divisions” says VODA Brands Chairman Josh Courtney. “We needed a space that could house a much larger studio and all of the other divisions under one roof.”
VODA struck gold with its West Nickerson Street address, which has drawn about 200 clients during the past six months. It features drive-in access, a full data center, a client lounge, daylight balanced hair and make-up stations, commercial kitchens, editing rooms, imaging services and ping-pong. In-house equipment rental for photography, and grip and lighting for film and TV is also available.
Stage 1 is a 5,500-square-foot space that rents for $1,100 a day while Stage 2 at 2,500 square feet rents for $700 a day. Both are built for sound. Production, casting and catering services are also available.
In addition, VODA now offers digital-capture services, pre-press/pre-media services, custom retouching, CGI, video editing, and mobile app development.
“We’re set up so you can use all of our services from beginning to end, or only what you need,” says VODA.