Wedding Photographer Office: Part 1 // Outline of the major issues

I’m lucky enough to have a room in my house designated just as my office. It’s Kelly Prizel Photography headquarters. And it’s looking pretty shabby right now. I know a lot of people show before and afters…and clean up even for their before pictures. But I swallowed my fear (ok, not swallowed, more like I feel like I have no energy to clean and that won out over fear) and took a picture. It kinda came to a head 2 weeks ago with the temperatures creeping up in the 90’s and we hadn’t fixed a broken AC unit yet. Surprise! The AC repairmen were busy now, which left me with only 2 AC units instead of 3. One HAD to go in my office. The other HAD to go in the bedroom. Which led to my office suddenly being occupied by me, Katharine (my studio manager), Natalie, 2 rabbits, and 2 guinea pigs. Did I mention the cats come in frequently? During, what has become this year, my busiest season. Move over September; June through August is kicking my butt.

So there are prints, coffee cups, hard drives, cameras, packaging supplies up the ying-yang, and so so much more. Plus 4 fluffy living creatures, their water, food, toys….I was silently screaming everytime I walked into my office.

My office has gone to hell. And I can’t take it. I know I’m literally in the busiest season and don’t seem to even sleep anymore BUT I can’t work like this. So it’s time to tackle my office, bit by bit. You’ll get an update every two weeks. It’s a great deadline for me to make sure I’m moving on things that need to get done.

Major Issues:

-Desks and desk configuration: I love my actual desk, but it is a blackhole of crap. Glass with a bit of water I was drinking from 3 days ago? Check! Post-it notes from who-knows-when? Check! But I also have multiple hardrives I need to access all the time. Or my card readers. Or desk lamp. These all need their place. A large issue is also where to put the desks. Right now, I’m facing a wall. Perfect for editing. But my back is to Katharine, who I need to talk to often. So, yeah, I need to put the desks in a way that makes sense.

-Gear: It’s semi-nuts how much stuff you need to shoot a wedding. And none of it has a place. I put my camera down after a shoot and don’t move them until I need to charge them for the next shoot. But that means they often hang out on my desk or the top of a bookcase. And the 64 charging cables I have need a home. The bijillion CF cards. Plus- the photobooth. The giant, space sucking photobooth. It sits in the entrance to my house most days. That needs to stop.

-Rabbits: Fern and London are my little co-workers. I love them. But they present a whole host of issues. Number 1: they chew everything they can get to. Which is why even the desks are metal. I need to protect my stuff from them better, including cords. Number 2: They are a large large presence in my office. They are space hogs. I constantly think about how I can configure the room better to enjoy watching them and have them as less a focus when people walk in.

-Wall organization: My walls are empty in here. I need to hang some art. Plus, I need to implement my magnetic wall tile idea to help track where clients are visually.

-Expedits: My bookshelves honestly hold whatever I throw at them. Labels? Organization? Nope. Not right now. That needs to change.

-Mail/shipping/packaging material: It’s amazing how much mail I need to keep track of. From checks coming in, to sweet thank you notes, to shipping wedding CDs/Albums, it all adds up. I need a lot of different packaging materials and a place to actually wrap things. Having a inbox and outbox. Sounds standard but I don’t have one.

-Outside: I want to be able to enjoy the outside as much as possible because, I’m not lying here, but 75% of my waking hours are spent in this office. I can go 2-3 days without leaving the house. I know, pathetic. I’m trying. So I want to have a mini office outside where I can blog, do emails, and other non-editing stuff. Maybe in a hammock??

– Working with 3 people: Things have changed a lot since February. This is the first full wedding season Natalie is not only part of the team as a second shooter but she’s helping to cull images, throw ideas off of, and generally much more part of the business. Katharine is our studio manager and just amazing. She’s here in the office very often. Which means 3(!!!!!!) people can be in the office at any one time. I don’t have 3 desks. I can’t fit that many. I have 2 chairs…..Natalie often sits on top of a rabbit cardboard toy. Oy. So I’m trying to figure out the best layout and function for 3 people occupying this space.


Oh my, if I lived any closer the urge to come a organise the heck out of you would take over!
Perhaps a tallish Ikea desk slightly on top of the rabbit pen would work with a tall high-backed stool? & some cable trays (from a hardware store) might help the chewing situation, when we used to have rabbits we ended up using offcut metal tubes for any low cables with foam bits on the end so that if chewing happened I noticed before anyone got zapped.
Good luck, looking forward to seeing the transformation!

Utilize your vertical space! I see higher shelves/cubbies and METAL PEGBOARDS in your future. Our office is a small spare bedroom with very little space, and tall shelves and a wall-control office pegboard saved our sanity!