Previous clients of ours owned an older building in which they operated their photography business. They wanted help with the remodeling of this existing building. Impressed with the quality of our work and our staff from when we remodeled their kitchen, these clients sought us out to help remodel their photography studio.
- Step 1: Customer Information
- Step 2: House Call
- Step 3: Project Review
- Step 4: Construction
- The Finished Project
Step 1: Customer Information
The photography business was housed in an old home that was badly in need of updates. After reviewing the existing conditions and discussing the needs of the photography business, we decided that the best plan of action was to remove the old building and build a completely new building that would house a studio area as well as an administrative area necessary in managing the large volume of photography produced by the business’s outside sales.
The photography business would also need to move out during the rebuilding of the new studio and find a temporary home. Consequently it was important to complete the new building as quickly as possible so as not to incur any more expenses than necessary.
Step 2: House Call
A problem arose when it was discovered that the Town of Chapel Hill would not allow a change of building style on the existing lot. The new building had to resemble a single family house although it could function as a business. Working closely with the owners to satisfy their functional needs as well as designing the new house to fit into the existing lot, was quite fun and challenging.
Step 3: Project Review
One of the more challenging aspects of the design was to create a very large room, over 20 feet long, with 12 foot high ceilings that would be the photography studio. As a result of this need we decided to build the new building in a split level design.
The new building would have:
A small reception area to receive guests/customers.
The actual Studio.
A bath/dressing room where clients could change and prepare for their portrait sessions.
A meeting room where customers could look at their photos using a digital format.
A large common area where the administrative staff could work- large enough to allow for additional part time staff who worked during the busy spring season – graduation photos, weddings etc.
An equipment room necessary for storing the various cameras and lighting required.
Offices for the owner and other key staff.
And finally a large storage area that would house the large volume of files accumulated by the business.
Once all of the desired requirements for the owners were satisfied the town had to sign off on the proposed project.
Step 4: Construction
The first challenge was the deconstruction of the existing house. Most of the house was unsalvageable– the old floors in the house were old heart pine that we had removed by a wood restoration firm that would clean and resell them.
Once the building was removed we were able to proceed with sighting the new studio building on the cleared lot.
The Finished Project
Approximately one year after we started the design process the photography business was operating in its new home.