How to Take Pictures in Small Room (3 Techniques for Boudoir)

January 3, 2020 posted by

– Okay, what’s up guys? Welcome back to the channel. I’m Mike Sasser, Boudoir photographer in
Los Angeles, California. But today we are in New York because I am teaching a little workshop on how to shoot video during
your boudoir sessions. And if you guys know
anything about New York, you know that the rooms are
really really really tiny and that is exactly the
hotel room that we have here. I mean this place can barely fit this bed. Now I worked really hard in Los Angeles to find like the perfect space, a spot with big windows, a spot with good light
that’s got nice floors and like a deep space so that I could shoot
exactly what I want to shoot. But I know that’s not
the case for everybody. A lot of people are shooting
in these smaller spaces. So I wanted to make this video
of three little techniques that I use when I do have
to shoot in small spaces. And hopefully these are
really gonna help you guys out for when you have to as well. (upbeat music) Now with an ultra wide angle lens, this hotel looks like it’s a decent size, but it’s really only ten feet by ten feet or three meters by three meters, for those on the Imperial system. But let me show a few
things for comparison so you can actually see how
little space there is in here. So here we’ve got, I think
it’s a Queen size bed. It may be a full size bed and then we’ve got, this is my carry-on piece of luggage that you can see, if I try and put it in between this space, like it doesn’t even
actually hit the ground there ’cause there’s not enough space
for it to sit on the floor. Here we have just a
regular computer desk chair that, I mean, barely has
enough space in between the bed and the desk. And here’s my camera bag, which, like, kinda opens but not really, in between this little space over here. And we do have one little
extra walkway over here that’s gonna allow us to
get a little bit more depth but pretty much, this is
what we’re working with. So for things to work with
in here, we have this bed, we’ve got big nice, light windows and we have this really awkward throne, like super unnecessary… I don’t know why they thought, like, you know what would really
tie this room together? A snake skin… Looks like a tarantula arm or something but we’re gonna use it. Hey Genesis! She’s gonna be helping us out today. – Hi! – And we’re gonna start
talking about our three tips, I think with a little
bonus tip at the end. I might cut that out ’cause I can’t remember if
I added a bonus tip or not. So the very first tip that we’re gonna do is going to be to shoot
from different heights. (smooth music) I like to shoot at eye-level a lot. And so, what that does, I think it makes things like
more personal with a client. I think it gives an evenness
of power and a connection. But, when you are limited
in a space like this, you kinda have to start to get creative. So let’s see a couple examples of how we can use some different heights to make some cool pictures. Okay, first thing we’re
gonna do is get rid of this ridiculous yellow. Where do you even put
this in a room this small? We’re gonna put it in here. (banging) Okay, so even though this
is a pretty small space, we have this massive, amazing window and I’ve always thought that window light, like good light, is more important than anything else, above location, above the outfits that they brought, above the furniture. So we’re really lucky that we’ve got really, really good light, so we’re gonna use that to our advantage. (music playing over Mike
instructing Genesis) (smooth music) (music playing over Mike
instructing Genesis) (smooth music) For this next shot, another, like, little bonus tip, I almost always shoot
with a 50 millimeter, like almost always in my space. But when you are in tighter spaces, I recommend that it’s a good idea to check out something a little bit wider. We’re gonna use the 35
millimeter for this shot. I’m gonna get nice and low and shoot up on her and the 50’s only gonna be
able to capture her face. We wanna be able to see more than that. So let’s make it happen. (music playing over Mike
instructing Genesis) (smooth music) (music playing over Mike
instructing Genesis) (smooth music) Alright, so that’s tip number one. Tip two is gonna be to add
a little depth to the space. We’re gonna use a foreground object. (smooth music) This can pretty much be anything. I made an entire video on this, which I’m gonna link above
and in the description. Basically what we’re trying to do is give the illusion of depth by using just something out
of focus in the foreground. Now I didn’t prepare and
I didn’t bring anything, so we’re gonna search
around the hotel room and see if we can find something that’s gonna work really well.
Let’s see what we have here. We’ve got like some half and half. That’s probably too small for it. Does this come off? Oh no, that’s just a turn. I’m definitely not gonna hold
up just the whole coffee mug. Actually it’s a good thing
that I got these yesterday because, I think maybe the… You want one? – [Genesis] I’ll take one.
– Yeah. It’s important to have
chocolate at your shoots for a number of reasons but
also ’cause I’m pretty sure these wrappers are gonna work, the way they kinda reflect the light off. So let’s go ahead and… White chocolate, so good. So when you put the
aluminum foil out of focus with the light reflecting off of it a bit, it’s gonna look really cool out of focus. We’re gonna take this phone
out of the background. (laughing) Clean up your backgrounds guys! Also this light is super
bizarre here for some reason. We’re just gonna make this a normal light. The more clutter you
have in your backgrounds, the more distracting it is, so I really recommend that, as simple as you can make them and as normal as you can make them. The whole kinda concept is there’s a little bit of
voyeur sorta character to it, so you won’t be looking
at the camera for these. Alright, go ahead. (music playing over Mike
instructing Genesis) (smooth music) (music playing over Mike
instructing Genesis) (smooth music) (music playing over Mike
instructing Genesis) Alright, so that’s tip number two. Tip number three is to shoot details. So what I love about boudoir
is not every single picture has to have a full body. It doesn’t have to have
their whole face in it. So when I’m selling albums, the goal is to get variety. So, in order to do that, we
shoot a lot of detail shots of, like, their collar bone, of their fingertips, of
their lips, things like that. So, especially when
you’re in a small space, you can sorta lean on
that a little bit more. So we’re gonna put her in a pose and then just get as many
detail shots of that one pose as we possibly can. (music playing over Mike
instructing Genesis) (smooth music) Tip number one, shoot
from different heights. This is gonna give you
more variety in your space. Tip number two, shoot through something. This can be anything you find, flowers, candy wrappers, doorways. And tip number three, shoot details. Uses the opportunity to
get a variety of images that you can sell in addition
to your standard photos. I’ve got even better videos
for you guys coming up in the next couple of weeks, so if you’re not subscribed, you’re definitely gonna
wanna hit that button. Go check out Genesis on Instagram and if you guys need a little
help with your editing, all of the photos in
this video were edited with my Ever Summer presets. There will be a link in the description and I will see you next week! (smooth music)


100 Replies to “How to Take Pictures in Small Room (3 Techniques for Boudoir)”

  1. Michael Sasser says:

    What are your biggest challenges for getting good pictures during your photoshoots?

  2. Anthony PC says:

    extra bonus tip: work with a tiny model

  3. Juan C. Escobar says:


  4. pascal soumoulou says:

    good job as usual !! hi from France 😉

  5. Navi Retlav says:

    QUESTION: What you do when your model half in the session decides to go full nude ?

  6. Matthew Sassa Photography says:

    Hey Michael, is that the new Sony 35mm 1.8?

  7. JAIME says:

    straight to the point, simple, clear, amazing… great tips man. Loved it!

  8. Viz Wiley says:

    She can get the diddly

  9. Agustin Tajch says:

    Great video! Thanks for sharing

  10. Charles Duzzie says:

    Foreground object….. I keep a few things in my setup ….. A piece of lace, a bag from onions (the red open bag), a piece of plastic bag to give the Doris Day affect. Yes, get creative.

  11. avishek majumdar says:

    Sir can you please make a video on how to have a similar session with speedlights if the option of natural light is not available.

  12. John Guzman says:

    Poifect! Thanks!

  13. Lea Flores says:

    Lens had to be a choice in this as well! What are you shooting with?

  14. CHL3488 says:


  15. Molten Hot Media says:

    Dope. Never thought about shooting that low from the ground. I’d be tempted however to stick a flash in that bathroom and use it as a soft box.

  16. Photography Nerd says:

    1:53 Your model has a passing resemblance to Chloë Grace Moretz if she had tats. 🙂
    I like your use of the nifty fifty lenses. Irene Rudnyk also uses her 50mm a lot in her photo sessions. So many photographers overlook this focal length. But I noticed lots of good photos from that focal length. Nice video.

  17. B Ioan Photo says:

    "I'm gonna go nice and low and I'm gonna shoot up on her" uhmm … ok :))

  18. Kevin Searcy says:


  19. Angelos Poulis says:

    skip to 3:35 , 5:39 . just saved your time. thank you

  20. Simon Bolz says:

    Bonus Tip: Use mirrors and reflections. Mirrors are in most small hotel rooms, too.

  21. Anton Haddad says:

    You're the alpha photographer bro 😉

  22. Far East Manila Video Production says:

    Genesis is perfectly God's beautiful creation!

  23. Monster Fueled says:

    I was eating those same white chocolate balls as I watched this. They're my guilty pleasure.

  24. Paul Duffy says:

    Nice shots, not sure about the nose piercings.

  25. Michael Black says:

    When you're shooting those detail shots, do you use a macro lens? If so, which do you recommend?

  26. Jonathan Cruz Cole says:

    Speaking of fitting into tight spaces, props to that cameraman for filming on that same spice while the photo shoot was going on.

  27. Lukas Pictures says:

    Model plays also a very huge role in creating such pictures.

  28. Bronte Bennani says:

    Just saw someone selling a picture of a paper cup on a table for $650 on Instagram… now this for $2500? Lmao the word pretentious doesn’t cover it. Dudes in my city who shoot this stuff and you can actually see the models skin texture for $75

  29. Kerry Sleeman says:

    great Michael

  30. BokehBard says:

    Like the video! I'm a street photographer, and I feel like I've learned something applicable to my own art and learned something new. I appreciate the time you invested into making this video.

  31. cson1304 says:

    Keep up the good work! Very honest and informative, this is very inspiring. The shots are beautiful, you certainly found your spot in the business. How can you protect yourself from being accused of sexual harassment from people who want to press money from you? Not all people come with good intentions, you know what I mean. Just thinking how a photographer can avoid crap of that sort.
    Best regards and certainly subscribed!

  32. Ysabele Rivard says:

    Always a joy watching your videos! I definitely have to try boudoir!

  33. Matthew Harris says:

    learning is so much fun! but i did have to be careful whilst watching this at work lol

  34. David Scott Bowles says:

    Dude your work is freaking amazing..

  35. Charles Oliveira, Fotógrafo says:

    Hi, man! Can you tell me what is the bag @ 1:23?

  36. DD Tease says:

    I'm interested in your video set up? in such a close space, what where you shooting video with and what lens/aperture, was it shot Raw 4K and then compressed?

  37. Bunarath FoTo says:

    i really love your tips thank you …

  38. koka g says:

    Keep up the good work! Very honest and informative, this is very inspiring. The shots are beautiful, you certainly found your spot in the business. How can you protect yourself from being accused of sexual harassment from people who want to press money from you? Not all people come with good intentions, you know what I mean. Just thinking how a photographer can avoid crap of that sort.

  39. koka g says:

    1:53 Your model has a passing resemblance to Chloë Grace Moretz if she had tats. 🙂
    I like your use of the nifty fifty lenses. Irene Rudnyk also uses her 50mm a lot in her photo sessions. So many photographers overlook this focal length. But I noticed lots of good photos from that focal length. Nice video.

  40. Suzaidee Mohd Shom says:

    Very informative video, thanks for sharing 😊

  41. Davyfreshh says:

    the biggest tip is that he picked a small model

  42. i-Toronto Travel says:

    I have a 530 square foot condo for shoots and I thought that was small.

  43. i-Toronto Travel says:

    A full frame camera would help in tight spaces.

  44. Art Fx says:

    Just i came for the girl!

  45. On2Vegas says:

    Do you use the A9 and 50mm to shoot your YouTube videos?

  46. Charlie Rick says:

    how i envy you

  47. Tristan V says:

    I dont to much models i do more advertising and comercial shots, but your tips are amazing, lets explore them in my next photoshoot. thumbs up man

  48. kieran Carter says:

    Your amazing and very talented I'm doing my first ever boudoir photoshoot this weekend.

  49. Raymond Isbill says:

    Very useful information. To me allot of the images seem underexposed but perhaps all this time I have been trying too hard to get nice even lighting.

  50. Mitu R Outpost says:


  51. Bema Fisherman says:


  52. Products Explorer says:

    Hi Genesis, nice clothes 🙂

  53. Paúl Aguilar says:

    Next part in pornhub.

  54. Micah Tuck says:

    You are a beast. Keep grinding.

  55. Retro Film Worx says:

    Dang! wonder what's the rate for the room $199 a night? Pro tips as always Micheal.

  56. Ailton Bechaire Pictures says:


  57. Vespertili Kildem says:

    What I like about this type of videos, of photography, is that LOOK AT GENESIS.
    She is not a model, she is a… just a girl. A regular girl.
    But she has beautiful tattoos (and I dislike tattoos) and HER BODY, holy shit ahah
    I love when average girls hide such beauty.

  58. Stephen Williams says:

    Hi Micheal. What do you do if you have a small room or small space about the same size as the room you use in this vide but there is very little natural light, for example, my bedroom is about the same size but the window is quite small and does not let in much natural light. What can I do?

  59. Satiwa says:

    Dang! that round ass

  60. David Li says:

    When space is too tight, shoot wider. That's the tip huh.

  61. Tawhidur Rahman says:

    will you please make a video for beginner photographers about gears? specifically about camera. I hope it will help a lot of people. As for beginners, also keep the price of cameras a little cheaper.

  62. Stanley Bao says:

    Guess where was Genesis when Michael showed us around the room ?

  63. Fish Keeper TV says:

    Thanks for this.

  64. Happy Hopping says:

    hihi, so my room is 70 sq. ft., I use the tripid to mount my camera taking a short video, the lens is set at 24 mm, I don't have enough space, so my head get crop out. The only thing I can think of is a 11 to 24 mm lens from Canon. is there other suggestion, Michael?

  65. Sayonara_爆姗辣酱 says:

    This is my dream job ! QWQ

  66. Travis McGhee says:

    That model is lit, great video and info.

  67. Deniz Aksu says:



  68. MegaPacosanchez says:

    When you say you are shooting with a 50 mm or a 35 mm lens you need to say if you are shooting fullframe sensor then what the equivalent would be for a crop frame or DX.

  69. shasashu says:

    You nowhere mentioned the name of the girl model in this video. We wanna know. She is pretty.

  70. plezx29 says:

    I think the problem with me, is that my camera is too big and I don't want to buy another camera unless I have to

  71. Teddy Tedd says:

    Good stuff 👍🏾

  72. hiranthaman says:

    we all know whats going to happen after this photoshoot..

  73. Juan Ritz says:

    Absolutely everyone definitely came here solely for the photography tips.

  74. G S says:

    Great tips thank you! How much do you pay your models for a shoot session?

  75. Nikhil Johari says:

    If we don't have proper lights in a room how to use softbox ???

  76. SLEVIN SHAFEL says:

    good video.

  77. mario bosse says:

    Nice nice video …

  78. Vince Lowe says:

    You've convinced me as to why chocolate is necessary on a shoot!

  79. Itsmehjesssicaa Morris says:

    Damn it Micheal, you’re so tall you don’t need a ladder like i do haha

  80. Marie Malvoisin says:

    I am such a huge fan of your work I am so glad your videos popped up on my recommendation feed. I have binged watched a lot of your videos.

  81. Ing. Eduardo Mata says:


  82. Luis Fraser says:

    Beautiful woman and some fucking amazing shots. Well played Michael, well played.

  83. Ripple Effect Productions says:

    Hey…. Thumbs up…Very useful tips… Got beautiful Model too..

  84. Aditya Chopra says:

    I didn't come here to learn Photoshoot. you know what i came here for 🙂

  85. Scott Isitt says:

    I would have never guessed you could use a candy wrapper this way. That was awesome!

  86. Michline Al says:

    I’m a simple man, I came to watch the video and smash…………

    The like button to show appreciation of your content.

  87. Linh Muun says:

    i like tatoo girls ^^"

  88. J S says:

    Just purchased your Accelerator and Videography courses. I've watched your YouTube material for over a year and thought you were extremely kind with how much you share. Looking forward to the courses. Thank you

  89. Sk Sajib says:

    What a?

  90. Sk Sajib says:

    What a?

  91. Alexandre D. Lemire says:

    Idk if I can trust this man's techniques after he said that "white chocolate is so good".

  92. WickedHorror says:


  93. Kemal says:

    Tip number 4: Find a sexy sexy girl and she will turn everything is magical for you even in that small spaces :p

  94. ChargeUK says:

    Just fell over your pages and this vid just wow how great to show the space and work "Brilliant"

  95. Luis Salazar says:

    Nice,Nice, Job Michael can you please make a video on to talk with your models without offensive words please. You’re all freaky natural and relaxing can’t get enough of your beautiful art 😎❤️🇺🇸

  96. Francesca Bonvini says:

    Loved the tips, but I really really loved her outfit and her tattoos! Omg!

  97. Franklin Avery says:

    There are larger areas to shoot at in NYC, the problem is that they're also very expensive lol

  98. Beard & Bald Head says:

    Video is very inspiring and full of good ideas, thanks!

  99. Liya Guerrero says:

    You’re so amazing, thank you for taking your time to make these amazing videos!
    Can you make one on posing plus size models and making them feel comfortable in this setting?!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *