The Studio Share by Kate and Jerm

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I reserve a block of time in a studio?


After signing a contract and becoming a member of our Studio Share, you will receive a login and password to our live online reservation site.  It operates in real-time and is therefore always current, so there is no waiting for reservation approval.  It is literally as easy as clicking on your desired photography studio, session date, and time.


Will it be difficult to get the dates and times that I want?


Not really.  Sometimes, of course, someone else may have booked it first.  However, we do NOT oversell memberships.  That means there is plenty of cushion in the schedule and a lot of open availability, even when our memberships are sold out.  We are also very careful to keep a good mix of members who are full-time professionals and those who maintain other day jobs… it helps us balance the demand between weekends and weekdays.  


How accessible are your locations for my clients?


Each of our studios has ample parking.  Our two downtown locations are in a converted turn-of-the-century factory that can be a bit confusing to navigate, so we do recommend meeting your clients at the building entrance.  The Studio on the Square in Noblesville is upstairs, so please be aware that there is no handicap access for that location.


May I bring in heavy props for my sessions?


When you reserve the studio, treat it like your own.  Many of our members create their own whimsical sets for themed sessions throughout the year.  For the downtown studios, you can pull right into the building and use the provided carts and freight elevator to easily get your pieces in and out of the studios.  At The Studio in the Barn in Westfield, we have a dedicated exterior entrance that goes directly into the studio that you can pull right up to in your car for loading and unloading.  The stairway in the Noblesville location could make this a little bit tough for large or heavy items.


I'm thinking about opening a studio with a few friends.


Did you ever argue with a roommate in college?  There is a reason for the phrase “the only ships that don’t sail are partnerships.”  A collaborative space among friends can sound good in theory, but in practice, they often dissolve due to disagreements over details like cleaning and schedule-hogging.  We take care of all studio management issues, so you can work as a professional in a zero-drama environment.  An additional benefit of joining Indy Studio Share is our prop rotation.  With a total of three studios and more on the way, we have a constantly-changing stream of chairs, sofas, benches, and other gorgeous new and vintage items that rotate through our spaces, keeping your portfolio fresh and fun.


Why not just create a studio in my home?


There is definitely something to be said for the convenience and resourcefulness of working at home.  However, our members have found that working from home is both a blessing and a curse.  The convenience is offset by the need to keep it clean and tidy, and it can lack a certain professionalism.  The biggest drawback, however, is that inviting strangers into your home on a regular basis can negatively impact the calm and peacefulness of the home as a retreat for both you and your family.  Being in a “real” studio fuels creativity and inventiveness in a way that is hard to describe.   


How do I pay my monthly fees?


You will receive an invoice via email once a month.  But we’ll set up an automatic payment program for your credit card so that you have one less thing on your mind.


What if I don't need all of my monthly studio time?


We do not roll over unused time.  If you do not need all of your studio blocks, we encourage you to grab a model and use the time to practice a new technique or build your portfolio.  You have so many new props, lights, and backgrounds at your disposal with your membership… make use of them every chance that you can!


I'm concerned that I don't have enough clients yet.


Well… that may be true!  We’ve all been there at one time or another.  If you are unsure, let’s talk about it.  One of our favorite things in this world is to help new photographers get traction in their business.  A studio WILL help, but we also have a few more tricks up our sleeve.  We’d be happy to review your portfolio and help you decide if you are ready to get started or if you should take some more time to hone your skills. We would rather be part of your success than something you regret.  If you are ambitious and driven and have the talent to back it up, we absolutely encourage you to dive in.  Historically our members see an increase in their client base when they invest in a studio share membership.  Family pictures in a field are gorgeous, but they simply aren’t for everyone, and winters are a hard time to be an outdoor photographer in Indiana. Many of our former members have grown enough to open their own independent studios in downtown Greenwood, Greenfield, Indianapolis, Carmel, and Broad Ripple.  In fact, we are former members of the Studio Share ourselves! The Studio Share is the perfect stepping stone for driven professionals. 


I don't know how to use studio lighting, yet.


Then what better way to learn than when it is all in front of you, already selected and purchased by someone else?  In all seriousness, although all of our studios have an abundance of natural light, every professional photographer should understand the basics of studio lighting, and it is not as scary as you might think.  There are numerous tutorials online, and you will get basic operating instructions during your tour/contract signing.  For more detailed training, you can book a mentoring session with owners Jeremy and Katie Plummer. Nothing beats the consistency and confidence that comes from having a dedicated, always-available light source.


Do you take everyone who applies?


No.  We interview potential members on the phone and during tours to make sure everyone we admit has a personality that will work well in a collaborative environment.  We also only work with insured, legal business entities.  THAT BEING SAID, if you aren’t an insured, legal business entity because you have no idea what that entails… then don’t be shy!  We can help you get started.  We also provide business mentoring and have helped numerous emerging photographers get set up the right way. 


What exactly is a studio block?


We don’t rent by the hour so that our members don’t feel rushed during setup and cleanup.  Instead, we rent by the studio block.  Each day is divided into two blocks.  That means if you reserve the AM block, you have it until 2:00 p.m.  If you reserve the PM block, you have use of the studio after 2:00 p.m.  You may open and close at your discretion.  If you want to open at 6:00 a.m., great!  If you don’t want to roll in until 10:00 a.m., that’s fine too.  You’ll have 24×7 access to each facility so you can come and go as you please during your reserved blocks.


Should I choose a premier/pro or a standard membership?


In addition to having more time slots, premier/pro members get a specific extra benefit:   They can reserve weekend time slots in advance. Standard members may only reserve weekend studio blocks two weeks in advance of the session date. This is usually plenty of time for emerging photographers, but our busier professionals need to be able to coordinate with their clients further in advance.


What if I have a problem with another member?


The reality is, you never interact with other members unless you choose to. If you use the studio and notice a problem, you report it to us and we take it from there.  We are pretty easygoing, but we do not tolerate messiness. We rarely have issues because we select our members carefully and enforce cleanup rules.  We can and do revoke memberships for housekeeping reasons.


Are pets allowed in the studios?


We only allow pets in the main studio in the Stutz Building, downtown. 


Is boudoir an option?


Yes, our membership includes a number of well-known Indianapolis boudoir photographers.  The suggestive posing of anyone under 18 is absolutely forbidden, and minors being photographed in the studio must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.   


Do you require business insurance?


Absolutely.  No exceptions.  But don’t worry, it’s not expensive,a and we’ve got a great insurance agent that can walk you through it. Contact Brian Culp at (317) 850-1336 or  bculp@morganinsurancegroup.com.


If I share a studio, will everyone's work look the same?


Not at all.  It is incredible and humbling to see how different creatives bring their own unique vision to the exact same space, and we are continually amazed at the quality and variety in the body of work that comes out of our studios. We have members from the entire Indianapolis metropolitan area, as well as photographers who drive up from Bloomington or down from Lafayette.  Indianapolis is large enough, and there are enough specific genres of photography, that we never seem to have direct competitors from the same geographic area who share the same specialty. 


What is the deposit requirement?


The deposit is equal to two months of your membership, so it varies depending on the plan you select.


I only need the studio for one day, can we make that work?


No, we do not rent on a single-day basis.  Our business model is geared toward serving only those who want to make a real commitment to studio photography.  If you need it once, chances are high that you will need it again.  Check out our rates and see if one of our smaller plans make sense for you.  That being said, we do sometimes rent the studio during off-peak seasons to other businesses at the rate of $400 per day. This option is available for business-to-business rentals only, and is not offered to individual photographers and videographers.  Examples include clothing retailers, commercial product shoots, video interviews, and editorial shoots for local magazines. 


Can I do a test session first before I commit?


No, unfortunately, we do not have the staff available to supervise and engage in trial sessions.  Feel free to bring your camera to the studio for your tour, though.  That will give you a good idea of how it looks through your lenses.


What if I hate it and change my mind?


Trust us on this… you won’t!  But if you do, there is an exit clause in your contract.  Please note that you will forfeit your deposit if you elect to cancel your agreement before the end of its term and that you may not be eligible to rejoin.  We encourage you to think through the commitment carefully before signing your contract.  The exit clause is intended for situations such as a medical emergency, relocation, or business closing rather than a simple change of heart.  We honor our commitments and expect others to do so as well.


What's the next step to get started?


You’ve read this far.  That’s a REALLY good start. (If you didn’t read this far, and just skipped to the bottom, PLEASE go back and read through the FAQ.)  The next step is to reach out to us for a quick discussion.  If it sounds like we’d be a good fit for each other, we’ll schedule a tour of the studio(s) you are most likely to use, walk you through any other questions you might have, and have a contract ready for you to sign.  Click on the “Contact Us” link above, or give Katie a call at 317-340-6247.