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How do you manage daylight in your studio?

I set up my front porch (enclosed but with basically a wall of windows) for my studio. It's about 13' x 7' with windows on the 13' side.
I have aluminum mini blinds covering the windows, but the lighting is quite different between daytime and nighttime.

I've also begun building Mark's shadowbox pretty much exactly to spec, except I added a lower shelf for storage. I haven't enclosed the back and sides yet to block light.

My question is; how do you manage daylight in your studio?

Should I get a blackout drape to cover my windows completely?

Will the differences in day/night light in the room be problematic, without additional window covering, once my shadowbox is covered on the sides and back?

I'm thinking I'll need to blackout the whole room to keep lighting consistent.

I considered trying to paint in daylight with the blinds adjusted to let light in, the windows face the North/Northeast. There are buildings across the street that may subtly reflect different colored and levels of light.

I guess I could experiment, but wondering what you guys are doing.


  • edited October 8
    @johnw, you probably need to experiment with the shadow box before deciding what to do. I don't do still lifes but I have a similar situation to yours. I enclosed a deck about the same size as yours and I have a wall of windows facing northeast so lots of sun (I'm in the southern hemisphere). I found I had to get blackout blinds to control the light adequately. Otherwise the light keeps changing - glaring full sun on the painting then shadows from trees as the sun moves across the sky. I can't work like that. But if you are going to do still lifes in a shadow box you may be able to manage for the time being with the blinds you have. 
  • johnw

    Any scope for establishing a day studio in the basement? 100% light control.
    The porch studio could be a pleasant night studio.

    I have two large windows looking north and west. Both have adequate verti blinds, awnings and large garden shrubs muting the light so as not to be a daytime problem. The 900 lumen studio lights dominate the easel, picture holder and palette.

    Also much less of a problem for me as daytime is planning and drawing time, reserving the painting and paint mixing for the evening.

  • Thanks, appreciate the replies.
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