Tips from the Trade: Using Vintage Props & Furniture for Photo Shoots:

Tips from the Trade: Using Vintage Props & Furniture for Photo Shoots:

SO- You’re doing a photo shoot. Whether it’s your shoot or you’ve been hired to style (or photograph, or art direct, or all of the above) Being a specialty rental company owner, I have had the honor of working with many of Nashville’s top art directors and prop stylists over the years. Through that experience, I have picked up on a few of their tips and tricks for making magic on film. Here are a few best practices that I see the pros use on every shoot. Give them a try on your next photo shoot and let me know how it goes! {Side note: YES, all of these images feature a piece of our inventory!}

Think Outside the Box

photoshoot sofa rental

Photo shoots are fun because we don’t have to be practical! Use that rug as a sofa cover, hang that chair on the wall. Mix colors and patterns as if everything goes together. Play with texture and scale. Things that we would never put together in real life somehow look amazing on film. There are so many ways to create a visual feast for all to see. 

Go BIG

Wicker Peacock Chair Rental

Photo shoot sets should be larger than life, so always go bigger and more than you’d think. Big rugs, High-back chairs and long sofas stand out on screen and..let’s be honest, make anyone in the shot look a little smaller- which most of us tend to appreciate! Layer 10 rugs up on the floor. Put 100 brass candlesticks down a table. Take what you’d do in real life, and multiply it by 10. That’s a good starting point for a set. 

Not Perfect? No Problem

Film & Television Prop Rentals

Vintage furniture is often not in perfect condition and especially on set, this is NOT an issue. Cameras and lighting cover a multitude of sins and that little tear in the upholstery can be covered up in so many ways. So don’t stress if it’s not perfect, embrace it! 

Avoid Mass Produced

Modern Vintage Chair Rental

Especially for your statement pieces, it’s important that the money shot is not on a piece of furniture currently sold at a big box store. You don’t want every Joe in America saying “hey, I have that chair!” So GO VINTAGE! There are so many styles and vibes that vintage furniture and decor comes in. It’s not all farmhouse! Modern, Glam, Bohemian, Industrial, Mid Century, Romantic, Velvet, Leather- the options are endless! Reach out to your local Specialty rental company {here in Middle TN, that would be yours truly, Spark Vintage Rentals!} and let us help you create a one of a kind set!

More is More

Celebrity photo shoot prop rental

The most successful prop stylists I know (and I know the best of the best here in Nashville) love to gather way more than they will ever need for a shoot. I realize sometimes budget constraints are an issue, but as much as you can, bring TONS of options. Every time a piece of our inventory gets rented for a celebrity shoot, I don’t get excited until I hear they used it. Even then, the chances the shot that gets published will have our furniture in it is pretty slim..but it happens!!

I sincerely hope these tips help you have a great result with your photo shoot! Happy shooting!

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