Oh Look. Yuri is Doing a Studio Conversion, Too


I'm building a studio, King of Microstock Yuri Arcurs is building a studio -- it's like we have this parallel mind thing going on. It's like we are doing the exact same thing at the exact same time.

But just between you and me, I think my $130 propane heater really pushes my studio over the top, compared to his new studio. Dontcha think? I mean, I wouldn't wanna say anything to him and all. But is it me or does his studio just look too, you know, chilly?

Don't you get cold just looking at it? I sure do.

The space is okay I guess. If you like that kind of thing. But I really like my compact heater. Plus, my windows have that black plastic light proofing. It is like, totally opaque.

Don't get me wrong. I am happy for him and everything. And I am sure he likes his new space, too. Different strokes for different folks, I guess.

(Thanks for the tip, Debbi. Thanks a lot...)



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Blogger djaef said...

Ha ha... poor Yuri eh. You've got balls posting this David, I have to give you that much. I'll never see your garage studio in quite the same light. :)

February 23, 2011 12:21 AM  
Blogger Emma said...

wow! That studio is amazing.. but where is your spare room??

February 23, 2011 12:24 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

ROFL! Don't worry. I'm doing the exact same thing as you and Yuri too and I'm thinking my Costco heating dish is the thing pushing mine over the edge too.

February 23, 2011 12:30 AM  
Blogger Alex said...

Blah Blah, I have tons of money to make the studio of my dreams. Blahblah let me show you how I got three of every light you've ever thought of touching.

I say screw him! Where's the ingenuity? Where's the DRIVE?! He had to go to *other* people's studios to see "how the solved problems" - you're solving problems right there in your garage all by yourself, without a bank of batteries that let you pop your flashes fifty times in a row!


ah well. Someday, David. Maybe.

in the meantime, we still love you :-)

February 23, 2011 12:38 AM  
Blogger Perry said...

Oh, sure, Yuri's studio is ok if you into all that excess space. You could never heat that place! (I wish I had his CLOSET space!)

February 23, 2011 12:59 AM  
Blogger siano photography said...

poor yuri,
nobody answers his ping pong serve ...
too much space, nobody really needs so much space to do good photography.

keep it real !


February 23, 2011 1:07 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

HOLY profoto batman! Some people have to live a horrible life...

February 23, 2011 1:08 AM  
Blogger Tony Dunn said...

You have heat in your studio??? I'm jealous.

February 23, 2011 1:43 AM  
Blogger Team Louish said...

I couldn't stop laughing reading this blog post!!

February 23, 2011 1:57 AM  
Blogger aaron said...

that was like watching cribs

February 23, 2011 2:01 AM  
Blogger Aaron LaRue said...

Just for fun, doesn't anyone want to figure out how much he spent on gear alone?

February 23, 2011 2:15 AM  
Blogger gianmarco said...

There is just no way that his wimpy little studio will ever compare to your garage set up! Or to my living room set up for that matter! And then with that huge ceiling light rig, where the hell is he going tho hang his bicycles?

February 23, 2011 2:16 AM  
Blogger Paul Baarn said...

Yuri is probably jealous when he sees what you can produce in your heated studio. Although I think his fast recycling mega flashes will heat his place nicely too.

Ah well, back to my living room for another photo shoot.

February 23, 2011 2:36 AM  
Blogger Stefan said...

@Alex, @siano. I think it's OK to be a bit jellous, but not derogatory. You need a lot of drive to get where Arcur is today. Let's learn from his success, and not be snidey about it.

February 23, 2011 2:43 AM  
Blogger Sean said...

I hope he only plans on shooting people in heavy jackets for winter catalogs in there because it looks unbearably frigid.

Your studio on the other hand could accommodate a Victoria's Secret shoot in December.


February 23, 2011 2:58 AM  
Blogger Graham Warsap said...

Your lucky. One heater to heat your studio. Think how much his heating bill must be.

February 23, 2011 4:11 AM  
Blogger francesca said...

This cracked me up david!

What a cheerful way to start a day! I have recently invested in the best studio equipment myself :-) My 20$ ikea shopping trolley bag! (http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/80162970) it has plenty of space for two d-lite heads, tripods and even two foldable umbrellas :-) I am the queen of the bus when I travel with it :-)

February 23, 2011 4:16 AM  
Blogger Pedro Cardoso said...

A dozen Pro8-a? Really?

Edit: Yeah, a heated studio would be nice. For now it's a pile of junk.

February 23, 2011 4:42 AM  
OpenID SUNSTER said...

I'm sure you have a nice bath tub in your house as well, is all I can say

February 23, 2011 4:48 AM  
Blogger francesca said...

by the by, I have been reading Yuri's introduction to microstock (http://www.arcurs.com/microstock-agencies-an-overview-for-beginners ) and I have to say that it is very interesting and worth a read for anyone

February 23, 2011 4:50 AM  
Blogger Nick Fletcher said...

When he's finished can he park his car in his studio...? Eh? I don't think so.

February 23, 2011 5:35 AM  
Blogger Andy O said...

I Think www.arcurs.com is down. There are to many people interessted in ;-)

February 23, 2011 5:43 AM  
Blogger Florian said...

Looks like Yuri needs some kind of castle to take pictures. You only need your garage. I´m proud of you, David. :-)

Greetings from Germany!

February 23, 2011 6:38 AM  
Blogger leex said...

Has anyone checked his website' Pretty much par for course, nothing that makes me sit up and take notice, but hey if he has the money and does not know what to spend it on...

February 23, 2011 6:59 AM  
Blogger philippe said...

all the gear, no idea!
who wants all that stuff when you can convert your own garage...?
(i'll get my coat...)


February 23, 2011 7:25 AM  
Blogger Firebrill said...

@ aaron, LOL!

February 23, 2011 7:27 AM  
Blogger Judy said...

I don't even know where to start.

February 23, 2011 7:37 AM  
Blogger andy said...

feels like you come to the end of the road when getting a studio like that...I'd prefer yours any day David! More spirit in yours...would be cool to borrow Yuris studio from time to time though :)

February 23, 2011 8:10 AM  
Blogger Berger said...

At the 38 second point Yuri says he wanted to keep it simple. Really? Simple??? He has more lights than my Christmas tree.

February 23, 2011 8:11 AM  
Blogger andy said...

feels like you come to the end of the road when getting a studio like that...I'd prefer yours any day David! More spirit in yours...would be cool to borrow Yuris studio from time to time though :)

February 23, 2011 8:11 AM  
Blogger James said...

Poor Yuri. He moved into his garage and converted his house to a studio. Your way is much better.

February 23, 2011 8:18 AM  
Blogger Steve said...

Sure, he has color-matched lights and you have the office lights from "Joe vs. the Volcano"! He has stunning models and you have Joe McNally. But you have given us more knowledge, confidence, and inspiration than any white-backgrounder ever could. Thanks, Dave.

February 23, 2011 8:28 AM  
Blogger michael said...

I agree David, it just doesn't seem cozy enough. I'll take my apartment with living room/studio, anyday! And who needs all of that equipment? He could have saved a ton by switching to the super inexpensive and super duper reliable universal translators, some miniphone cord and a few
Vivitar 285s. I wouldn't trade him for the world. Ha! Who am I kidding? That place makes me sick!!!

Similar situation. I know a photographer in my town, Philly, that bought a church and converted it into a studio on the main floor and the 2nd floor, into his home. Kind of insane.

February 23, 2011 8:46 AM  
Blogger William said...

The matte box he needs to keep lens flare out of the picture is going to poke a model in the eye one of these days.

February 23, 2011 8:54 AM  
Blogger michael said...

...and jeez! If I'm not mistaken, I think one of those Profoto packs cost about the same as a small SUV...

February 23, 2011 8:55 AM  
Blogger peeker said...

"We're never going to use this many power packs... what they are good for is when one goes bad, we can replace it with another" I dunno about you, the last thing I worry about with Profoto gear is one going bad.

Either Profoto has a genius marketing department and helped Yuri with that ad, or someone at Profoto had a HUGE commission check land in their lap.

Didn't see a whole lot of work going on or customers lined up. He also had cheesy flowers and candles on his ledges in the spare room.

I know you will knock it out David with your warm and cozy studio.

February 23, 2011 9:16 AM  
Blogger Christopher said...

Emma: Easy, he just opens the garage door shovels off the snow and there's all sorts of space.

February 23, 2011 10:01 AM  
Blogger Christopher said...

Emma: easy, he just opens the garage door, shovels the snow and there's all sorts of space.

February 23, 2011 10:02 AM  
Blogger Boilermaker Imaging said...

Yes... this IS MTV Cribs: Photographer Edition... lol. Insane setup.

February 23, 2011 10:12 AM  
Blogger RandJ-Photo said...

My checkbook cringed!

February 23, 2011 10:13 AM  
Blogger Debbi_in_California said...


February 23, 2011 10:16 AM  
OpenID md1337 said...

I can't see the vid at work but the title "My New Studio. How to Spend 300k Euro on lighting Equiptment" feels too braggy for my tastes.

I like a simple guy with his head on his shoulders like you David, and I can relate to your $300 budget a lot more than I can relate to his $300k budget.

While you conversion is useful material for us reader, his seems to be about "look at me I'm rich and fabulous". Not too useful.


February 23, 2011 10:19 AM  
Blogger Nikica said...

On his blog, the title says:'My New Studio. How to Spend 300k Euro on lighting Equiptment'
300.000 Eu is app. $412.000 and that is the whole and only point of this extravaganza.Sad and stupid, in my mind.
I say-go Dave, go Joe, go Strobist!!

February 23, 2011 10:52 AM  
Blogger Sahlfoto said...

@ Aaron LaRue. He spend just over $400.000 on lights alone.
It's an amazing studio! I live just a few blocks from there and I had the opportunity to shot there a couple of months ago. It's a beautiful old house with an amazing view over the harbor. Just outside the center of town here in Aarhus. The video doesn't do it justice. It's even more amazing when you see it! So come to Denmark!

February 23, 2011 10:52 AM  
Blogger Red Dragon said...

OMG that is so very depressing on so many levels!!! Amazing

February 23, 2011 10:53 AM  
Blogger Jenika said...

I think I saw him shiver.

Of course it's chilly in there - why do you think he has to buy so many lights? Just tryin' to heat the place up...

February 23, 2011 11:10 AM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Studio - shoomdio... who needs a studio? Who needs the finance charges and creditors knocking at the door?

Of course the money spent would be fun to have in my pocket...

February 23, 2011 11:23 AM  
Blogger Pat said...

Like a balding, middle-aged man buying a red convertible sports car, he must be compensating for something. David...you are HUGE.

February 23, 2011 11:32 AM  
Blogger www.390inc.com said...

Sooooooooooooo what!! Biiiiiiig Deal! His studio, like you said, must be freezing! He never mentioned his heater. He bought all that other stuff and everyone is cold as hell!...lol. Man that dude has it made!!

February 23, 2011 11:59 AM  
OpenID yo-sarrian said...

I'm freezing just looking at the video of his studio space, while yours has those nice warm-tones in the wall and the heater looks awfully comfy. I'd go for your studio for-sure :)

February 23, 2011 12:14 PM  
Blogger Stacey said...

wow.... just wow! of course, the only thing you need to make your studio better David is an actual ping-pong table. Yuri just has to use the wall... I guess he can't afford the table itself

February 23, 2011 12:26 PM  
Blogger Surly said...

I'll bet if you add that clawfoot bathtub no one will notice the difference between your studio and his. How can someone make enough $ to finance a studio like that by selling microstock? I'm impressed. I like all of Yuri's videos. Hard not to like that guy.

February 23, 2011 1:11 PM  
Blogger Village Press said...

Wow maybe you need a 2 car garage

February 23, 2011 1:18 PM  
Blogger Tom said...

LOL - You could use your garage door opener to create one of those light hanging rigs!

February 23, 2011 1:28 PM  
Blogger stan chung said...

Why do you need so many? Gimme one of each! LOL Unless the gear are just props.

Yeap- definitely way past envy.

February 23, 2011 1:29 PM  
Blogger Passos said...

Gosh... what is this AH kid bragging about?... You know someone doesn't have class when they spend all that money on the studio and then on the production of the video and totally forget to clean up, leaving open cans of iced tea lying around...
David, the only thing missing in your studio is the bath tub!
Your cool! And don't forget: it is easy to be romantic when you have the cash!

February 23, 2011 1:31 PM  
Blogger yannisiman said...

You could call me "Spinach" right now! I'm so green with envy!!! :(
But on the flip side, I just found a reason to raise the bar on my future goals huh? (rationalizing I know, but can you blame me??!!)

Brave post David!

February 23, 2011 1:32 PM  
Blogger bmillios said...

You know, videos like this are manna from heaven. Just show this to Mrs. Strobist, and suddenly your wildest requests seem reasonable.

Thanks for the pointer. I'm definitely showing this to my wife.

February 23, 2011 1:59 PM  
Blogger jlmiller said...

Have to admit, it's a bit no a lot of overkill. I mean really does anyone need that much equipment? If it's fashion or product 6 heads maximum and a lot of creativity goes a long way.

Too flashy for my taste..

A large space is nice, but a lot of them.. again overkill. It's obvious he has bought the building, because the rent would be a killer, let alone the electric bill to heat the place.

February 23, 2011 2:03 PM  
Blogger Jose said...

I would advise that he just buy the entire Profoto company at one shot rather than one piece at a time :-)

February 23, 2011 2:24 PM  
Blogger lecycliste said...

Where are you putting all the stuff that's in the garage now?

That's the major challenge I have for a garage to studio conversion.

February 23, 2011 2:28 PM  
Blogger lecycliste said...

Love the garage conversion, but...

Where are you putting the stuff that's in there now?

that's the major problem I face for my own garage-studio conversion. When my wife moved in a year ago, the mound of stuff only increased.

Any suggestions?


February 23, 2011 2:32 PM  
Blogger CC said...

Can he drive in there though? I think not. I pity da fool!

February 23, 2011 2:32 PM  
Blogger Laurian said...

Thats an insane setup.

Its makes alot more sense when you think about the rental possibilitys, though he doesn't mention it, i'm betting he can rent out a room or two, and some profotos any time and still have enough for his shoots.

As a studio And Rental house, that makes alot more sense.

February 23, 2011 3:01 PM  
Blogger Ken said...

Yeah, yeah...so, he's got a bathtub in his studio. Who takes a bath during a photo shoot anyway? His studio's got nothing on yours.

He's got no heater, so his models are going to get cold. Not only that, but if he should suddenly find a need to climb on the roof during a shoot--no ladder. And let's not forget that he can't even park his car in his studio!

I'd say he has a bad case of studio envy and he's just showing off all those lights to cover up for the deficiencies...

February 23, 2011 3:12 PM  
Blogger David said...

@ lecycliste-

The stuff stays, as shown. It is a garage foremost, I just want to be able to shoot in it easily. Cars go out for shoot -- mebbe bikes and scooter, too, if we need the room.

February 23, 2011 3:14 PM  
Blogger Spencer said...

Wow - so much negativity in the comments on someone doing what they want to do. What is this petty garbage? I'm guessing that there isn't a commenter in this thread that likes to have something in excess (or something just the way you want it) sometimes, eh?

February 23, 2011 3:41 PM  
Blogger Victoria Mason said...

laughing my ass off!!!

holy crap - 9000sq feet? my whole house is 2100. holly molly... some people have life I guess.

February 23, 2011 3:55 PM  
Blogger Gary said...

Sorry David... he doesn't need a heater he just has to fire up another 8a when it gets chilly.

February 23, 2011 3:56 PM  
Blogger Kevin Halliburton said...

Yuri, I got your space right here man! My studio is the world! THE WORLD MAN!

And like... Save the planet and stuff... Yer totally smokin' the photons their dude... You'll shoot yer eye out!

... But I could live with it if I had to.

February 23, 2011 4:34 PM  
Blogger Cynthia said...

I'm glad you took it upon yourself to publicly poke fun at Yuri. I got the same email from him yesterday about his $300,000 studio renovation and just had to laugh (scoff is more like it). Who has that kind of hubris...?!

February 23, 2011 4:39 PM  
Blogger Quaid said...

Saw this and thought immediately of strobist. Is that weird?

Kanye West - All of the Lights


February 23, 2011 5:02 PM  
Blogger nobofoto said...

I looked around on his website, but I couldn't find the page where he explains how he DIYd those beauty dishes of his. Would you please post the link to that as well? Thank you!

February 23, 2011 5:20 PM  
Blogger rstone said...

Well, the least he could have done is shown the line of people outside the studio waiting to get their portrait done for $4500 each..

February 23, 2011 5:31 PM  
Blogger David said...

Au contraire -- I was more poking fun at the disparity. We are simply in different economic zip codes.

More power to him.

Quite literally.

February 23, 2011 5:56 PM  
Blogger Steen said...

A streetview of Yuri's studio in "Mejlborg" Aarhus, Denmark. Very nice building, very charming city. This winter has been very cold as the video shows.

February 23, 2011 6:08 PM  
Blogger Frank said...

I'll bet he doesn't have a FlashBus!

February 23, 2011 8:20 PM  
Blogger Mike said...

best profoto commercial I've seen in a long time!

Clearly Yuri has too much time and too much money!


February 23, 2011 9:41 PM  
Blogger Robert said...

He has admitted that he and his team have to shoot 8000 to get 50 usable images. I think if he had a heater he could improve his batting average.

February 23, 2011 10:11 PM  
Blogger Darwin said...

I bet you got more 'wife points' by only spending $200 than he did spending what some of us make in a year!

February 23, 2011 10:20 PM  
Blogger tlqueen said...

WOW! Asking hubby to build me a studio like Yuri's for my birthday next week. I'm sure he'll do it as soon as he stops laughing - too bad it won't be in this lifetime! An unlimited budget, tons of space and excessive equipment do not guarantee creativity and artistry!

February 23, 2011 10:31 PM  
Blogger Joshua said...

My own curiosity since I haven't seen one before, but was that just a lens hood on his lens when he shot the flash burst?

If it is a lens hood, does that particular design do anything special or is it just an old design for probably an older lens he had attached to his camera?

February 23, 2011 11:44 PM  
Blogger Paolo said...

David, I think you should allow him to use your garage sometimes, just to get him back down on Earth for a while!
Go strobist!!

February 24, 2011 12:46 AM  
Blogger gianmarco said...

I finally figured out why he needs all those lights.....he is based in Denmark....he is so far north that during the winter it's always dark :D

February 24, 2011 4:35 AM  
Blogger Sachin R said...

Dear David,

You have as much talent in creative writing as you do in photography. Everytime I read your lines with witty, original sense of humor, I end up laughing out loud (literally). Post some pics of your propane heater 130$ one. :-)

Sachin (India)

February 24, 2011 7:48 AM  
Blogger Kome Photos Imagery by Design said...

WOW.. Yuri's studio is the dream.. I'll get by with my 2nd-bedroom-studio for now :)

February 24, 2011 11:13 AM  
Blogger Larry said...

Why the dispair? You can play ping pong in your space also... I'm thinking they are almost the same!

February 24, 2011 12:14 PM  
Blogger Westcorner Studios said...

Uhm I will take 1 of everything...Please.

February 24, 2011 1:03 PM  
Blogger Alonzo Riley said...

Is it just me or does his "light balanced" make-up room (4:27) appear to have all sorts of colors going on in it? I see it going from warm to cool.

February 24, 2011 1:28 PM  
OpenID md1337 said...

I don't know about the makeup room but he should throw another $25,000 into the editing room in order to paint the walls dark gray and also get a couple monitor hoods.

February 24, 2011 3:10 PM  
Blogger Stormin said...

As my good friend Syl Arena pointed out, all that high-end Profoto gear and Yuri still can't shoot above the sync speed of his camera...

no HSS button for you Yuri

gimme a Syl's gang-light of 12 canon580EX2's anytime


February 24, 2011 8:20 PM  
Blogger shawnpix said...

It's a shame to have all that top of the line gear. Bought it all at once too, it seems. That means it'll all become obsolete at the exact same time. :) Though, when he goes to upgrade to new gear, maybe he sells all the old stuff at a nice discount.

February 24, 2011 9:35 PM  
Blogger nico said...

Wow, so many people are really jealous of Yuri it looks. If you really did not care you wouldn't be bragging about it on the Internet. I say, good for him he can afford all that gear. 50% of it is probably surplus but... so what?

February 25, 2011 1:22 AM  
Blogger Paul said...

What is with all the hating and slagging off the equipment a photographer uses? I wonder how many people who make disparaging comments had actually heard of Yuri Arcurs before they saw the video even though they have probably seen his pictures on a daily basis in magazines, papers,on websites and in brochures. Google his name, read the tutorials he has put out for stock photographers and then comment.

Yuri Runs a (very) succesful studio and I'm sure that he went through a cost analysis before the gear was bought.

If you can sell 2 million single stock licenses per year and deliver the same consistency year after year you need the best gear you can get. The kind of pictures and volume he produces can't be done with an SB900 and a DIY soft box made out of some cardboard box ... unfortunately.

February 25, 2011 11:42 AM  
OpenID chrisnemes said...

Your petty heater is no match to a few dozen modelling lights.
You didn't actually think he got all that gear for shooting, did you?

February 25, 2011 1:50 PM  
Blogger Richard said...

I live in California....I don't need no stinking heaters!

February 26, 2011 11:45 AM  
Blogger Kristof Pattyn said...

I've seen better equipped studio's then his. Sure he has all the heads and modifiers.
What he lacks is an infiniwall, a retractable and inclinable white ceiling which one can use as a reflecting plane of 20 square metres for lighting. These offer more versatility then having a dozen batteries.
Just my 2 cents...

February 26, 2011 11:48 AM  
Blogger Keith Lee said...

He doesn't have a garage, but does have a bathtub! Class.

February 26, 2011 7:01 PM  
Blogger Tim said...

Boys and their toys...

spectators and their jealousy


February 26, 2011 10:24 PM  
Blogger Ido said...

It is interesting that Yuri is doing an upgrade of his studio, especially since there is some commenting about the possible demise of microstock, among those in the Strobist blogroll on the right side of this page. See Zach Arias http://www.zarias.com/microstock-sim-cards-in-cameras-big-foam-fingers/ and also A photo Editor http://www.aphotoeditor.com/2010/09/14/microstock-unsustainable-according-to-istockphoto/ for example. Yuri himself says there are some problems with the industry, e.g. http://www.arcurs.com/problems-with-microstock

But despite all these things, if he can make a living in troubled times, more power to him.

On the microstock forums, when someone has lighting problems, Strobist Lighting 101 has been posted as recommended reading. Do you think any of them would try the studio upgrade recommended here? ... :-)

February 27, 2011 8:22 AM  
OpenID damnuglyphotography said...

I'm sorry....it's insane, and the kinda thing you do if you're looking to launder money, but still very impressive.....but I must have missed the memo...who is this guy?!!


February 27, 2011 12:23 PM  
OpenID 99722c3e-42a6-11e0-a461-000bcdcb471e said...

Love the studio but does anybody know the bellows he's using on that Nikon D3x on 0:46?

February 27, 2011 2:20 PM  
Blogger Daniel Rodrigues said...

I didn't know that MTC CRIBS was doing a special on photographers...

February 28, 2011 2:43 PM  
Blogger oleg said...

i cant see HASS/SINAR

February 28, 2011 6:25 PM  
Blogger Ian Symonds said...

But is he happy?

March 02, 2011 7:13 AM  
Blogger JerryPH said...

I know I will never have as many lights as he does... but I do know that I could kick his butt at the ping-pong table... LOL!

Just an awesome studio!

Now David, when are you opening your (garage) door and show him "wazzup" about how building photo studios should be done? :-))


March 06, 2011 8:40 PM  

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