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25 Things You Should Know About Photo Backdrops

Written by Backdrop Express Photography Team on . Posted in Photography Backdrops, Storage & Care, Studio Equipment

Photography Backdrops

Professional photography backdrops vary in style, size, material and color, to fit any type of studio or special event’s needs. Understanding the basics of each type of photo backdrop can be quite a daunting task for beginner studio photographers. Below we offer you some quick, helpful facts to set you on the right path to deciding which backdrop would work best for you and your clients.

Seamless Paper

Seamless Background Paper

1.  We offer 68 unique colors of seamless backdrop paper, from the basic black to the bold orange.

2. Along with vinyl, background paper gives a seamless backdrop style, from floor to ceiling, showing no edges or separation from floor to wall. This look is popular in fashion and commercial photography.

3.  Many photographers find the biggest benefit of seamless paper is that it does not require the hassle of scrubbing to clean it. Once dirt appears on the floor edge from shoe marks, the ends can be cut off with scissors or a utility knife and discarded. Background paper is a popular choice for cake smash and baby shoots for this reason. If you want to try to conserve a roll of paper for as long as possible, many photographers utilize a plexi-glass sheet as a floor surface on top of the seamless paper to avoid foot print marks, and to give a special reflective element to it.

4.  Seamless paper must be stored in a dry environment to retain it’s smooth, seamless look. If left for long periods of time in any kind of humidity, wrinkles will start to appear throughout the paper as it absorbs the water from the air.

5. Seamless paper is manufactured in 4 sizes: 26″ x 12 yards, 53″ x 12 yards, 107″ x 12 yards and 107″ x 50 yards. The 26″ wide size is perfect for tabletop photography, the 53″ wide size is ideal for headshots and single portraits, while the larger 107″ width is needed for groups, large products or shots that require movement.

Read More: 8 Basic Tips for First Time Seamless Paper Users

Vinyl BackdropsFeaturing: Pure White Vinyl Backdrop | Photo Courtesy of Ryan Walsh

Vinyl Backdrops

6. Vinyl backdrops are one of the easiest backgrounds to clean if dirt spots start to show up from shoes, food messes or pets. Just wash off soil marks with a damp sponge and wipe down with a clean rag.

7. Vinyl is a preferred backdrop material for high-key photography. Our white vinyl offers a glare-free, matte surface that doesn’t reflect light. The super white tone is easily blown out for a professional infinity look. Many photographers feel vinyl adds an unwanted light reflection onto their subjects, but at Backdrop Express, our selection of Infinity Vinyl Backgrounds by Savage® are made of a non-reflective matte finish vinyl to reduce any glare.

8. Do not fold for storage. Tight folds can create wrinkles in the material that are difficult to release. It’s best to leave your vinyl hanging up or rolled around a strong core, like our Aluminum Backdrop Core. Store vinyl in a room temperature setting. Cooler temperatures can make vinyl stiff and nonpliable.

9. Our vinyl backdrops are offered in sizes: 5′ x 7′, 8′ x 10′, 8′ x 20′, 9′ x 10′, and 9′ x 20′. Our smallest sizes is perfect for studio headshots with one subject. If space for movement or a small group is needed, we recommend moving up a size to the 8’x10′. If a large subject like a car needs to be photographed, we’d recommend opting for one of the largest sizes, like our 9’x20′.

Read More: When Should You Use Vinyl Backdrops?

Computer Printed BackdropsFeaturing: Fuchsia & Dark Pink Chevron Printed Backdrop 

Computer Printed Backdrops

10. Currently, we offer over 1,000 unique designs and images on our computer printed backdrops. Patterned, floral, abstract, scenic and holiday themed styles are available, to match virtually any photo shoot. If you’re looking for a completely custom design or a special red carpet backdrop, a computer printed backdrop is the best kind of photo backdrop to work with.

11. Considering the limitless patterns and styles, printed backdrops work great for  themed parties, photo booths, theater productions, studio shoots and special events!

12. Our printed backdrops are available in two materials. The poly/cotton fabric is a heavyweight, sweatshirt-like material, and our polyester weave is a lightweight, tablecloth-like fabric. Both have the benefit of being wrinkle-resistant.

13. Printed Backdrops can be ordered in multiple sizes: 5′ x 6′, 5′ x 6.5′,  6′ x 8′,  8′ x 10′, 10′ x 10′ and 10′ x 20′. The smaller sizes are ideal for studio portraits with one or two subjects, while the larger sizes are necessary for photo booths, weddings and theater productions.

Read More: 5 Ways to Use Computer-Printed Backdrops

Muslin BackdropsFeaturing:  Verona Hand Painted Muslin | Photo Courtesy of Ryan Walsh

Muslin Backgrounds

14.  Muslin backdrops are 100% cotton, offering a very dense weave for a long-lasting quality backdrop. They are a lighter material than vinyl or seamless paper, making these ideal for transporting on-location.

15. If not stored carefully, muslin will wrinkle. The best storage method is to roll your muslin up to avoid any creases, or you can fold it very loosely as to not create lines. If you decide to invest in a muslin background, you’ll also want to think about investing in a good handheld steamer. Steaming your backdrop from the back once it’s hung up is the most effective way to rid it of wrinkles before a shoot. However, many photographers embrace the traditional, wrinkled look instead of trying to steam out every line. If you’re interested in a seamless backdrop look, we’d recommend looking at seamless paper or vinyl.

16. Each muslin backdrop is unique in appearance, whether dyed, hand-painted, or wash finished.

17. Although all of our muslins are produced with a rod pocket along the top to hang through a backdrop stand, they do not require support systems. You can get creative and drape yours over chairs and tables for a romantic, old-world style.

Read More: Why Should You Use Muslin Backdrops?

Collapsible BackdropsFeaturing: Indigo Nights Collapsible Backdrop | Photo Courtesy of Ryan Walsh

Collapsible Backgrounds

18. Collapsible backgrounds are easily transportable and ideal for in-studio and on-location shoots.

19. Most of our collapsible backdrops are reversible, with one side showing off a dark mottled pattern and the other side showing a lighter version of the same pattern. This is a great benefit to photographers working in small spaces or on a budget – order one collapsible backdrop and receive two usable backgrounds!

20.  Collapsible backdrops are lightweight and can be hung from a vertical crossbar by use of clamps, however they are also made with velcro straps on the top and bottom to be strapped securely to their own collapsible backdrop stand, designed specifically for its unique shape.

21. Collapsible backgrounds are available in 5′ x 6′, with several styles also available as 6′ x 7′. These backdrops collapse to 1/3 of their original size and fit conveniently into their carry bags.

Read More: Collapsible Backdrops Add Flexibility To Your Photography

Solid Color Fabric BackdropsFeaturing: Spring Pink Fabric Backdrop

Solid Colored Fabric Backdrops

22. Our solid color fabric backdrops are very easy to work with, especially for those working in smaller studios. Starting at just $29.95, they are perfect for beginner or student photographers, or anyone looking to stock up their studio with lots of backdrop options!

23. We offer 29 unique and vibrant background colors within this line.

24. One of the biggest advantages to these fabric backdrops is their wrinkle-resistance. They only require a quick steam before a photo shoot if they’ve been stored loosely folded. They can be thrown in the wash in cold water, and tumble dried on a low setting.

25. Our fabric backdrops are available in 5′ x 9′ – a convenient size for headshots, babies and kid portraits. Many colors are also offered in a 10′ x 10′ and even a 10′ x 20′ for large groups or events.

After reading these basic tips, which backdrop style do YOU want to try next?

-Backdrop Express Photography Team

Interested in learning more about photo backdrop care? Read Handling & Care of Your Photo Backdrops!

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Comments (2)

  • Background Stand Photography

    |

    This is very nice blog. I got meaningful information from this. Keep it up.

    Reply

  • ingrid.it

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    Why not a special on made in italy style photo backdrops? 😉

    Reply

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