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How to Custom Build a Set

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Feb 16

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Advantages to DIY

Building a set lets you create a custom room or background for your images. It can be done  inexpensively and up the production value of your photos, giving you the freedom to dream up whatever crazy ideas you want.

What’s covered

  • 0:35- Advantages of set building
  • 1:45- What we’re building
  • 2:30- Only build it to where it looks good from the camera angle
  • 3:45- Materials used
  • 6:00- Using drywall
  • 7:15- Framing
  • 8:45- Where to start with ideas

Where to Start

The set only has to look good from the angle of the camera, meaning you really don’t have to build it all the way out. Once you come up with an idea try finding some cheap lumber and other materials that you think will give the effect you’re going for. Investing a couple hours into this will make your images more unique and allow you to get the exact shot you want.

  • Connor Young

    Great video! although it would have been cool if it was like a time lapse of the whole set being made with advice in-between!

  • Jenny Su

    Love Tim Walker, incredible photos for fasion!!!!!!!

  • Peter Cornelisse

    Use (dry wall) screws for your dry wall: less damage disassambling it and so it will last longer.

  • Anonymous

    I completely agree. Use screws, not nails, and preferably some kind of screw that doesn’t camber out (ie. get ruined easily), so they’re easy to remove and reuse.

  • Aaron Nace


  • Jay

    Use metal frames instead and DOW board instead of drywall.  You can still get architectural sturdiness, but like 1/5 the weight.  We even faux finish the DOW board.

  • Alfonso Barona

    Here is a helpfull video to building a set!!i saw it months ago and i think it could help!!

  • Sebastian Ortiz

    To build a sturdier wall, you want to lay the sheetrock horizontal to vertical framing, the way you were laying it, would not be as sturdy and safe…. I, myself, am a carpenter by trade… also if you want to keep from constantly ripping nails from the framing, and sheetrock…. buy some galvanized steel brackets and drill pilot holes into the 2×4′s where they will meet and use screws to keep the frame together, now you can always take the frame apart easily and safely, without ruining the 2 x 4′s… and use sheetrock screws to affix the sheetrock to the frame, being careful to not drill a screw into the brackets on the frame… Just draw a line about 2 inches from where the bracket is on the sheetrock and that’ll be your screw placement when putting on the sheetrock… Hope that helps, Aaron!

    Great video.

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