Why Staging Outdoors is Absolutely OK!

I keep hearing that 'Staging Outdoors' is considered an absolute 'No, No' in certain quarters.

Guess what paint friends.  I 100%, completely, absolutely, comprehensively disagree. 


In fact, the best light for photos, is natural light.

If you are a creative, use your creativity. 


Have you got the kit...you know, the full outdoor lighting kit?

Tonge in cheek image of sky with 'for sale outdoor staging kit'.  |  fionadebell.com

Oh, silly me. None needed. Light is available for FREE!

There is this magical disc in the sky that beams its warmth and bright rays down on us and turns night to day. Hoorah!

So where do you start?

Let's take a look at one of the 'Outdoor Staging MASTERS' at work.

Be sure to take note of the conditions, (is there bright sunshine, are there long shadows, is it cloudy, raining, overcast etc). And learn. 

I'm serious - study the images and see what draws you - what works and why! It is important and doesn't happen by accident!

This collection is from the amazing Linda of Q is for Quandie, (more about Linda later).

Click on the images to see Linda's full blog posts for each piece! See how skilled she is? Not a white backdrop in sight, yet the furniture looks stunning.

Linda has used what is available to her - to brilliant effect!

See - you really don't need to spend a fortune on creating a 'home studio' (though if you want to, this post has some great tips on doing it on a budget).

So what can we learn from Linda?

I think it is fairly obvious. Just because you don't have a perfect studio space at home, where photography becomes simple, does not mean you are excluded from creating those scroll stopping images. In fact some of my favourite photos have been taken outdoors!

As Linda says, "When done well there is an almost magical quality to photos of indoor furniture taken in an outdoor setting. A buffet strewn with autumn leaves has a romantic appeal that you just can’t create as easily indoors in front of a blank white wall. Who doesn’t dream of pulling a ‘real’ dining room set outside for an impromptu candlelit dinner al fresco? The sky is literally the limit when staging your furniture photos outdoors!"

Linda is one AMAZING blogger who, when it comes to outdoor staging, is the master.

TIP: Click the images for the full blog on each piece!

Just to remind you, Linda's blog is Q is for Quandie. Fantabulous!

I had to add my own image here - after Linda was kind enough to give me the quote you just read, I remembered my own dining table staging from a couple of years ago.

Fiona Debell photographs her dining table outdoors in evening sun. | fionadebell.com

If I can do it so can you! Seriously! 

I defy anyone to scroll on past this image - it's pure eye candy!

Inside staging is good too...

I truly believe that those working so hard at re-loving and re-finishing and re-purposing furniture are both creative and resourceful. 

We put so much of ourselves into our work that it breaks my heart to see homogenized 'staging' with ultra plain white backgrounds and identical 'sets' of props.

When everything looks the same we become blind to it.

You are creative. Feed your creativity. It is what makes your 'Brand' YOUR brand!

As my good friend Julie McDowell just said to me, "Be your own ‘Brand Manager’ stand out from the pack and make your work instantly recognizable as soon as it is scrolled over. You have a millisecond to make your work stand out from the rest. Be your ‘own’ kind of beautiful. Concentrate on complimentary colours and be unique". 

Julie perfectly demonstrates her point with this lovely Gentleman's Dresser. Yes her background is white, but it is intricate, cute and has depth - it perfectly reflects her personality.

My advice (for what it is worth).

Study the pictures that YOU like for inspiration - not to copy - but to figure out what it is that drew you to them.

The most successful furniture painters - and the ones who sell the most, do just that. I promise!

Just to illustrate, here is another master of her trade - All Shabbed Out - I don't see a white backdrop anywhere in her work - and I can tell you I ALWAYS stop and look at her pieces when they pop into my feed!

The pictures are linked to her Facebook page if you want to see more!

When you see one of these pieces you KNOW it belongs to All Shabbed Out - her staging builds her brand.

Am I making sense? It's instantly recognizable.

What now?

Get your lighting right.

Get your angles right.

Work with what reflects YOUR personality.

Work with what you have available.

Don't spend a fortune on staging 'kit'.

Stand out from the crowd.

Be true to your creative adventure.

Let your work reflect your personality. 

Remember the phrase, 'people buy people'? Be true to your creative instinct and it will all come together.

Have confidence. You are amazing!

Finally, above all, ENJOY the process!

Have a fabulous day!