Summer may be drawing to a close soon, but ice cream is everyone’s year-round fave. Unlike the real stuff, Ink & Elm’s Dip n Dots backdrop won’t melt on you and its matte vinyl is tear resistant, so you can use it as a floor drop, too. It’s water resistant in case some real ice cream spills from your subject’s hands (or yours, we’re not judging). You can order the backdrop with grommets along the top for an extra $8, or spend $15 to get a pole pocket along the top. Sizes range from 3 x 2 feet up to 10 x 6 feet. Yum.
We’ve warned photographers before about the very real danger (not to mention illegality) of photographing on railroad tracks. With Backdrop Outlet’s Western Steam Train backdrop, you’ll get all of the folksy wanderlust of a track shoot without the immense risk. Like other backdrops in the company’s Western collection, the Steam Train is available in sizes ranging from 5 x 6 feet to 10 x 20 feet, depending on your backdrop material. You’ll have a number of different materials to choose from, including Baby Drops, which is a heavy matte vinyl; Candy Drops, printed on a thin nylon-polyester material; and Candy Stick, a film-backed drop that can be stuck to a wall and peeled off for reuse up to 15 times. If you need something larger, the company’s Platinum is a wrinkle-free fabric that is washer- and dryer-safe.

Velour backgrounds are a relatively thick but lightweight material that is available in 40x5 to 8x12 inches. They give you the look of seamless without the hassle of getting crumpled up and ruined. Most are made of wrinkle-resistant fabric and can be reused again and again. Even though these backdrops are not available in a wide range of patterns and colors, they are perfect for those looking for low maintenance backdrops.
For gear, I used my Canon 50mm 1.4 lens. My camera settings for most of the shots you saw were f1.8,  ISO 640 and shutter speed around 250. No flash. Just natural light. You really just need to play around with it a bit depending on your lighting situation and what not.  Be brave and use that manual mode on your camera or at least the aperture priority setting. I did test shots using stuffed toys while the little guy was napping so as not to “waste” any precious time with him and risk missing any good shots. If you have older kids that will sit still you can get some really cool shots! If only Mr. C was old enough for an M&M bribe. Mr Moose did well though…. Here’s a test shot…..

What can I say? This background is flimsy and cheap and you can see right through it and it's packed folded and the creases never come out. It arrived with a few runs which is frustrating but you get what you pay for. All of that being said, under the right conditions the backdrop does photograph well, if you know what your doing. Shallow DOF and creative lighting and it did what it was needed for, which in my case was a quick set up for a baby holiday portrait.

The idea is to hang this backdrop so that some of the floor print is actually hanging up off the floor and this works very well. The full-length photo shows this way of hanging the backdrop. However, it also works very well if you just hang the backdrop so that the brick is straight up and the floor print is on the floor. The creases from the item being folded are not avoidable, but I did not do a thing to try to remove them and, as you can see, they did not cause any problems in these photos. I am very careful to fold the backdrop when I'm done with it on exactly the same creases so as not cause any further creases or wrinkles. It's easy to do, but a large floor area is very helpful when folding. The smaller sized one might be a better option if you shooting only single subjects. I bought the LimoStudio backdrop frame LimoStudio Photo Video Studio Adjustable Muslin Background Backdrop Support System Stand & Cross Bar, AGG1111and the two together are awesome. I truly love this product!
The Emart portable background support kit features adjustable crossbars, an aluminum alloy construction for portability and durability, heavy-duty spring clamps, and heavy-duty nylon sandbags. Another great thing about this product is that it comes with a bag so that you can take it with you on your trips. What’s more, you can adjust the height from 2.6 to 7 ft and the width from 5 to 10 ft.
As with lighting systems and camera equipment, backdrops require some kind of support to keep them in place. Background supports can be simple or sophisticated systems. The simple ones are easy to set up and break down and are well suited for location work, while sophisticated, permanent studio systems can hold multiple backgrounds that can be raised or lowered either manually or at the flip of a switch.
While many photographers are experts at their craft and able to utilize natural lighting and landscapes as backgrounds for their portraits, studios that provide a controlled environment are a necessity for many photographers. A key component to any photography studio is your background material as the right background materials can make or break a photo session. To ensure you achieve the overall theme and feel of your photography style, here's a look at what you might consider when choosing affordable background materials offered on eBay .

Cheryl Woods is an accomplished photographer, designer and branding consultant with a career spanning 20+ years. Her photographic work includes editorial, fashion, portraiture and product photography for major companies in the consumer products field including QVC and Hanover Direct. She received a B.F.A. in Photography from the University of the Arts and an M.F.A. in Media Design from Full Sail University. Cheryl's work has been exhibited at the Lowes Museum of Art in Coral Gables, FL, The New York Independent Film Festival and the Rosenwald Wolf Gallery in Philadelphia, PA. Check out her website here!
Even shooting on location you can achieve some background lighting magic. The sun moves around throughout the day — think east to west as well as dawn to dusk. Analyze what time of the day the sun will project the light on your subject at the desired angle. Note: Hard light (direct sun) will create darker shadows while diffused light (cloudy overcast) will create softer shadows.
This is one of the best purchases I've made! I have a Talk Show and wanted good lighting and a place for my banner without spending hundreds of dollars. Well this was it! The stand where you hang your back drop, extends. It can go extremely wide or small enough to hang a small banner for an event. Same thing with the length. It can go as high as 6/7ft and as low as 2/3ft. Everything came new, nothing broke, everything worked. All four light stands can raise high or go low. For people using this for photography I strongly recommend getting some brighter light bulbs. This would be my only issue and recommendation. The bulbs are not bright enough at all. Its ok for the mean time or if you don't really need bright lights. It's amazing how this entire set up can be broken down quickly and all packed into a large, black, gym bag looking thingy that it comes in (of course inside the delivery box). I've had it for about a year and have taken it down atleast twice. My daughter and I put it back together when we moved in about 20 min or less. It comes with 4 light stands, 2 with umbrellas & 2 with the square light covers, 2 light covers, 1 backdrop stand, 3 sheets (black, green, white), 4 light bulbs, 3/4 clips for sheets & large black gym bag. Highly Recommend!

Another buyer mentions that it’s easy to adjust the portable backdrop stand and that it’s perfect for light-weight backdrops. He highly recommends it as one of the best background stands available. However, a couple of users have noted that the product is flimsy and breaks because the plastic is of poor quality. Some also complain that they received a damaged unit.
Now that you've got all the wow-worthy props you need, it's time to consider how you want your photo booth to look. Do you want to set the scene for a fiesta? Or maybe you'd like to create a photo booth that's filed with floral touches? Perhaps you're going for something a little more seasonal appropriate such as a mad scientist set for Halloween or Irish clovers for St. Patrick's Day? No matter the occasion, we have backdrops that fit every theme. Beyond this, we also offer a myriad of wall decorations and cardboard cutouts that can easily be added to accent your statement-making backdrop. And with our 110% Lowest Price Guarantee, everything is priced to make you smile too!
Cheryl Woods is an accomplished photographer, designer and branding consultant with a career spanning 20+ years. Her photographic work includes editorial, fashion, portraiture and product photography for major companies in the consumer products field including QVC and Hanover Direct. She received a B.F.A. in Photography from the University of the Arts and an M.F.A. in Media Design from Full Sail University. Cheryl's work has been exhibited at the Lowes Museum of Art in Coral Gables, FL, The New York Independent Film Festival and the Rosenwald Wolf Gallery in Philadelphia, PA. Check out her website here!
In the shot above I used a two light setup. The main light, camera left, is a Profoto D1 1,000Ws head inside of a 50 inch Westcott Apollo Softbox. While the idea of mixing what is considered to be a high-end strobe with a budget softbox my not sit right with some, I find the indirect lighting source from a Westcott or Photek to give a really nice and even light. The 60 inch Photek Softlighter, which I also enjoy using, may only cost $95 but gives a really nice, soft, and even light. If these lower cost indirect sources are good enough for the likes of Mario Testino and Annie Leibovitz, then they are good enough for me. Clay Cook did an great article on these lighting sources, "Lighting Like Leibovitz," that you can find here.
There are a few things to consider when choosing a backdrop size, including the size of your studio and the size of your subject. Portrait subjects should typically be pulled at least 3’ away from your backdrop to prevent shadows and allow for easy lighting. Of course, this distance your subject will be from the backdrop will be altered when taking overhead or backlit/high key shots. Below, we’ll discuss both the length and width restrictions of common backdrops.

Cheryl Woods is an accomplished photographer, designer and branding consultant with a career spanning 20+ years. Her photographic work includes editorial, fashion, portraiture and product photography for major companies in the consumer products field including QVC and Hanover Direct. She received a B.F.A. in Photography from the University of the Arts and an M.F.A. in Media Design from Full Sail University. Cheryl's work has been exhibited at the Lowes Museum of Art in Coral Gables, FL, The New York Independent Film Festival and the Rosenwald Wolf Gallery in Philadelphia, PA. Check out her website here!
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