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It a swanky studio space that looks like it was packed up and airlifted straight from a posh arts district in a big, coastal city. The Omega Watch Red
had one model who brought six suitcases up here, Ellinger said. didn know if she was coming for the shoot or trying to move in. addition to its 14 members (Ellinger says the co op is looking for one more), Fotowork Studios has an internship program to polish young photographers. Abilene Christian University freshman Ashlee Justice is the inaugural intern, which she says Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra 150m makes her of the guinea pig. having access to some prime studio space has been a major boost for the graphic design major.
While some of the studio tenants are full time photographers, a good many of them fall somewhere in between weekend enthusiasts and seasoned pros. They can justify acquiring their own studio space, but they still need a place where they can put down roots and practice what they love. The co op gives them that happy medium.
Amanda Tanner, one of the full time shooters of the group, had been looking for her own studio space in Abilene before hearing about the co op effort on Facebook. There already were some options out there, but nothing nearly as attractive as the Fotowork space.
A heavy metal door on the property southeast corner leads to a double flight of concrete stairs. Omega Speedmaster Reduced On Wrist
The rusty, red brick building is part of the old downtown industrial district, south of the railroad tracks that bisect Abilene heart. The newly charred corpse of the old Matera Paper Co. building lies just a couple of blocks down the street.
While Fotowork birth was a collaborative effort, CADCO architect and photographer Steve Ellinger helped to lead the charge after visiting a similar co op in Boston. He began sharing his experiences on a Facebook group for Abilene photographers, which got the discussion rolling. The rallying cry was pretty simple: Why couldn Abilene accommodate a similar space?
Workshops presented by Ellinger and others lend an added element of professional enrichment to the studio.
not the type of indoor studio with lights everywhere, where people feel like they have to be stiff, Tanner said.
Shoots at the studio include wedding and family photos, commercial photography and the occasional professional model. Ellinger works with the latter type of clientele, which can make for an odd contrast to the studio blue collar surroundings.
furniture is retro, the layout clean and airy, and the walls feature framed, glossy photographs of posed models.
While showing off the space, Ellinger takes an especial point of pride in noting the project financial independence.
find the space we have for the price we pay for it would have been impossible, Tanner said.
Whereas the northern Omega Speedmaster Moonphase Chronograph
These are the freshly minted Fotowork Studios, home to 14 local photographers who have formed a co op to practice and hone their craft. The group officially formed in October, negotiating a lease for the space and completing some minor construction work with the members own money. A series of added walls divides the space into two photo studios, a dressing room and a main lounge.
half of downtown has experienced a remarkable aesthetic overhaul in the past 25 years via a series of high dollar restoration projects, south downtown continues to carry an air of neglect.
an incubator, if you will, Ellinger said.
Visitors who make the climb to the top will find a true Abilene anomaly.
The downtown location has helped, along with an atmosphere that sets visitors at ease. Whenever possible, she likes to use natural light from the windows to illuminate her studio shots.
She says that moving into the co op has doubled her business, and that she booked through the first week of April. Previously, she had used a spare room or garage at her home in Potosi for studio portraiture.
haven asked anyone for a cent, Ellinger said. done it all on our own. each chip in $125 each month to use the studio space, which leases for about $850 monthly. The extra money goes toward new studio equipment, which any photographer can tell you gets prohibitively expensive.
Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra 150m
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