Bell is one of
The business is at
The Studio is a member-based rental photography studio featuring a client meeting space, dressing room, lighting equipment, backdrops and props.
For Bell, it marks the culmination of a longtime dream.
"This has been a project that has been in the works for three different moves for us," Bell said in an interview at the just-opened studio.
Bell grew up in a military family. Her husband, William, is retired from the military and works on
While the couple was stationed in
Bell said her father is a photographer and she took pictures all through college, eventually joining the Professional Photographers of America. She specializes in boudoir and wedding photography.
Before the photography studio could materialize, the couple moved to
After moving to a home near
For help in starting her business, Bell turned to the
"It was well worth it," Bell said. "They helped me really take a look at what you need to make a business successful."
Bell set to work renovating the space, including removing old floor coverings and painting walls. She credits her husband, parents and a group of friends who call themselves the "Awesome Possum Posse" with helping remake the space.
The space now includes a front parlor where photographs on consignment are on display. It includes a small coffee bar and some old-fashioned wooden classroom chairs that an uncle bought at an auction.
There is a dressing room, and a conference room dominated by a smart TV, where photographers can screen their work for potential clients.
The largest area is an approximately 26-foot-square studio space featuring pull-down backdrops and track lighting. Bell said an outdoor space behind the studio could also be a good photo spot.
She hopes The Studio eventually has up to 25 members renting space for their photography projects.
Another potential project Bell would like to help organize is a wine, art and jazz night in which
Bell said she thinks people who venture to the area would see the same potential there that she did.
"I love the area," Bell said. "I love the historic buildings and the old charm."
For more information about The Studio, call 779-3080, go to StudioHopeMills.com or visit The Studio's Facebook page.
(c)2014 The Fayetteville Observer (Fayetteville, N.C.)
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