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As a relative newcomer, I still have tons of questions about every little thing I might do. It occurred to me, after seeing this category, that it would have been a giant help to me to just see examples of working artists' booths in one place, instead of searching around for information. I'm starting the thread by showing mine, and I hope others will add theirs. It really could help someone.

I know my shot isn't perfect.  What is good about it definitely came from advice I found on AFI.  I can say that while it is imperfect, it got me into a great show.  I had to borrow the tent and walls from a friend because I still don't have my own tent (with only 30 days before the great show - yikes!), but I think it came out relatively well.


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A great many artists don't want to show their booth images.

Did you look at the thread I started earlier today about the booth images on a show web site:

That might answer your questions.

Larry Berman

I thought about this Larry. But every artist who knows me knows what my booth looks like, knows my bins, knows my work. So why not put up an example? This shot has gotten me into a few good shows this year. Knock on wood that it continues.

Here's my current booth shot. It's set up as a corner, shot at night with artificial light, on my driveway. The glass is still in the framed images. Minimal spot knocking required. Note the cloth skirts at the bottom of the pro panels to keep out light and hide the tent legs.

Here's mine

Larry Berman

Jim, would you describe your light setup?



Three 100 W CFL bulbs in standard ceiling fixtures wired in parallel about 2' apart on center, fastened to a white 1x6. Two Manfroto pipe clamps with threaded baby studs bolted through the plank and clamped to a shortened Trimline 10' pole supported by two tees, one at each end. Trimline now sells these pieces for this purpose. The pipe clamp come from any standard grip house or photo supply store like Calumet. Very quick to rig and solid, uses less than 150w power.
For this shot, there's also a 350w/s soft box pushing fill light into the front of the bins.

I'm just running through the site this afternoon looking for some images and this one stopped me dead. What I especially like (beyond the composition, excellent lighting and neatness) is the fact that Jim is not pretending he will only be showing 10-15 images. There is a lot of truth here, see the light bar? see, the various panels, more than the conventional "U", see the bins, see the structural bars and the top? Good job.

(Jim, I'm also thinking that you arranged the images with color in mind also, right? Like the light coming in in all the images on the right hand side). 

Connie, that's the way the booth looks at a show, if I have a corner. I've replaced the three CFL bulbs with three LED bulbs, so I run them off a battery if there's no show-furnished electricity. Aside from gallery-style price tags next to each image (not shown here to simplify the shot), and a hanging booth sign, this is pretty much the same booth you see at a show. The light bar is actually doing the job of lighting the artwork for the shot, just like real life.

I do tend to shoot my booth shots at night, so that the light is completely controllable. But I have high-powered strobes, speedlights and softboxes, as well as flags, cutters and scrim to do the job properly. Don't let anybody tell you photography is simply just a click of the button.

Jim, I really like those wood bins.  Do they bread down?  Who makes them?  I am looking for a folding desk like the one that propanel makes, but the wood looks much better!


Teresa, they don't break down. They are very heavy. The one in the center holds 15 20x26" framed pieces and about 100 matted pieces, plus some additional storage. I built them myself. You can get pneumatic casters at Northern Tool and Harbor Freight. I tow a trailer with a ramp in the back, so my strategy is to put it all on big wheels.

I've seen designs for breakdown desks that use slotted Baltic Birch. Anything made of wood is going to cost you in terms of weight. If you are transporting in a van, the ProPanel strategy of aluminum conduit and carpet is much more practical, and lighter.

Jim - where can you purchase the cloth skirts?

Thank you ~ Iris Motley Photography

You make 'em yourself. Or find a seamstress.My wife Karyn made my first set, and is in the process of making the second set. Essentially you buy a couple bolts of heavy duty fabric, fold it in the middle, cut off the folded part so that the skirts are the height you want (12-18"). Keep the selvage edge so you only have to hem the ends and the tops. The tops are hemmed at the same time you add strip Velcro. You can buy bulk Velcro from JoAnn Fabric and other sewing supply houses. These only work on Velcro style panels or carpet walls.

Or you if you have ProPanels, you can buy carpet extenders that velcro to the ProPanels. Look at the very bottom of this page:


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