A neat and modern, monochromatic home office setup

Two-Desk B&W Space of a Content Creator in Italy

“The studio is superb — not overly spacious but still has plenty of room for both my large desk and a smaller one for creating content”

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Name: Ferdinando Marrone

Location: Italy

Occupation: Sales Assistant in a tech store

Desk area: 1,2 m² (13 ft²)

Cost of setup: ~$3,5K

Social media: Instagram, X

Website: Notion

Hello! Tell us a bit about yourself

Hi! I’m Ferdinando, a technology enthusiast since I was a child.

I love all things tech and well-designed.

I currently work in a tech store as a salesperson, which suits me because I get to experience and observe all the latest innovations in the tech world.

I kicked off my tech content creation journey in mid-2023, eager to share my love for desk setups and all things tech, especially Apple products.

A close-up view of an Apple MacBook Pro on a stand displaying a colourful dot matrix design, with a blurred background featuring peripheral devices and part of a monitor

I’ve also always loved designing and hunting for new wallpapers for my devices. Actually, that’s how I got started with creating digital products.

I’m a big believer in the boost you get from regularly changing your device’s wallpaper, be it on your smartphone or computer.

I constantly update my website with everything I find interesting and high-quality among the products I have the chance to try.

The site includes sections dedicated to various product categories, from desk setups to the best iPhone cases.

Take us through your setup

Item Model
Monitor Samsung
Monitor light bar BenQ ScreenBar Halo
Laptop Apple MacBook Pro 16″ 2021, M1 Pro
Keyboard Logitech Craft Keyboard
Mouse Logitech MX Master 3
Desk mat Orbitkey Desk Mat Slim
Laptop stand Woodcessories Laptop Stand
Desk shelf Woodcessories Monitor Stand Dual
Docking station Baseus 17 in 1/USB-C
Web camera BenQ ideaCam S1 Pro
Tablet Apple iPad Pro 11″ M2
Wireless charger Aulumu M01

My work environment is always changing, yet I’m really happy with it at the moment.

It all started about four years ago when I decided to buy a house, with the minimum requirement that it have a room specifically designated for creating my studio.

The studio is superb — not overly spacious but still has plenty of room for both my large desk and a smaller one for creating content.

A tidy workspace with a monitor, laptop on a stand, desk lamp, keyboard and mouse, set on a white desk beside an ergonomic chair

Having two separate desks was key for me.

It means I always have the perfect spot ready for any task — crucial for my minimalist and clean content style.

With two different spaces, I can keep my recording and editing areas separate, streamlining my workflow and making the most of my bursts of inspiration.

My content creation style is very focused on giving importance to the products and their details.

That’s why I wanted a super clean space with perfect lighting and nothing but a desk mat on the table — it sets up a clean, minimalist background for my subjects.

On the other hand, I have my workstation, which I need to always be clean and organised but above all always ready for use.

A responsive laptop, a spacious monitor, a 3-in-1 charger always ready, a dock with ready-to-use inputs like USB-A/C, SD slot, and audio jack, and a good dimmable light system (lightbar and desk lamp).

A minimalist desk setup featuring a black shelf with a metallic mobile phone stand and a portion of a monitor to the right

A big move was painting half the studio a deep dark grey (my favourite colour), to add depth and always have a naturally contrasting background ready.

I have always been a fan of monochromatic black & white tones that perfectly embrace minimalism.

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Having walls of that shade allows you to create an almost infinite black depth effect in different shots.

Furthermore, being passionate about the minimalist style, it creates that sense of cleanliness and concentration on the scene, which stimulates my creativity just from the moment I turn on the soft-box and position the subject in the middle.

An ergonomic mouse and keyboard on a grey mat on a white desk, with a blurred background

There is good natural light, but it was essential to add a few artificial lights to always have control, especially when recording content.

Down the line, I definitely want to upgrade to a standing desk so I can switch up my height and stand more often, and get a new monitor focused on photo and video editing, instead of my current gaming one.

What’s your favourite item on your desk?

My favourite item on the desk is definitely the MacBook Pro.

I had an old model with an i7 that was really struggling to even start a simulator on Xcode.

Fortunately, I was able to sell it and also immediately find the newly released Pro with an M1 chip at a discount.

I didn’t hesitate a second.

Since I switched to the M1 Pro chip, it’s a pleasure to use it every day; it doesn’t miss a beat.

I have used it in the past for coding, and today for photo-video editing, showcasing its incredible versatility.

It’s a pleasure to use it as the heart of my workstation and to be able to carry it around if necessary.

A closed Apple MacBook laptop on a stand, with a partial view of a keyboard and a mouse in the blurred background

What apps or tools do you use to get things done?

The apps I use most are definitely:

Updating and writing my to-do list daily with Todoist is a crucial part of my workflow.

It’s available on every device, including web browsers, and is very fast and responsive, thanks in part to its natural language recognition.

 A MacBook screen displaying a desktop wallpaper with a dot matrix design, overlaid by various application icons and a weather widget

What books, blogs, or podcasts recently caught your attention?

My biggest source of inspiration is the tech YouTuber Oliur.

His story is incredible; he applies exceptional aesthetics to his content, and they get straight to the point. I highly recommend checking him out!

 An ergonomic computer mouse on a grey mat placed on a white desk, with a soft-focus background

For podcasts, I often find myself listening to various series, especially during my train rides to work. MKBHD’s Waveform stands out as a favourite I regularly tune into.

As far as blogs are concerned, I believe that 9to5Mac is the best when it comes to the latest news everything Apple related.

Any tips for other makers who want to improve their workspaces?

The advice I find most beneficial is to maintain a desk setup that is as clean and minimalist as possible, minimising distractions.

This approach has significantly boosted my productivity in my own setup.

A modern workspace with a large monitor and a laptop on a stand

Regarding product selection, I believe that opting for a spacious desk — particularly one that’s deep — a monitor that meets your specific requirements, and a comfortable chair is crucial.

In my view, these are the key elements to prioritise for an effective workspace.

What does your typical day look like?

My day is always very full and depends a lot on the schedule of my main full-time, 40-hour weekly job.

I typically start my day at 6 am and aim to be in bed by 11 pm at the latest.

The first thing I do in the morning is check my nighttime notifications, then I put my phone aside and watch content on my iPad while I eat breakfast.

Although no two days are the same, I stick to a weekly schedule as closely as possible.

On days when I’m stationed at the shop from morning till evening, my activities are limited to occasional social media checks and email responses during brief downtimes.

On my days off or during shorter shifts, I pivot to my side hustle as a content creator.

This includes scriptwriting, post planning, content recording, website management, and brainstorming new digital products for everyday use.

Thanks to my iPad, even train journeys to work become productive sessions where I can squeeze in some work.

In the little free time available, I manage to fit in gym sessions four to five times a week and indulge in quick gaming breaks with my PS5, favouring games like FIFA or F1 online.

These brief gaming sessions are vital for unwinding.

Looking ahead, my ultimate goal is to gain full control over my time, gradually decrease my hours at the tech store, and devote more energy to my brand.

I aim to transform my current passion into my future career.

Your tips for working from home?

Since I can’t work from home with my current job, I’ll tell you about what I do on my days off when I’m building my brand.

It’s super important for me to fit in a sports session; it breaks up the day and keeps me moving.

I also make sure to take quick, 15-minute snack breaks every two hours to help me stay sharp.

A sleek home office setup with a monitor, a laptop on a riser, a keyboard, a mouse on a mat, and a desk lamp, arranged on a white desk with a black chair

Plus, using all the Apple stuff together is awesome because it keeps me focused and stops me from getting sidetracked by random notifications or apps.

Being smart with how I use my time and stuff is crucial for getting things done.

However, taking enough time to chill and recharge is just as, if not more, important.

How to Take Better Breaks When Working from Home
Improve your productivity and cut down on stress with these ideas for taking better breaks while WFH.

We’re a reader-supported publication. This article might contain affiliate links. It means we may receive a commission if you click a link and buy a product that our maker has recommended. The interview was done independently.

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