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Another special effects background is the translucent background that is used in videography or photography to disappear under accurate lighting. It is a perfect backdrop to use for theatrical scrim effects wherein the photographers or videographers control the appearance and disappearance of the subjects. These backgrounds can be illusion netting, gauze, scrims and so on. The fabric used for these backdrops can be translucent or transparent and diffusive or non-diffusive.
I would definitely play around with it. Your not going to want to go too wide with 4 because odds are they will move around a bit and you’ll end up with some soft faces. Some key things to remember would be try to keep their faces all on the same plane of focus, that will allow you to shoot a little wider. Generally with 4 kids I would aim to shoot around f/4 but certainly play around. At that aperture you may want to consider moving them further away from the background. Keep in mind the closer you are to them and the further away from the background they are the more bokeh you will get!
I am helping a friend’s daughter with her wedding planning and want to make a backdrop like this for the wedding ceremony. Can you elaborate on how the strings of lights were plugged in and whether they all “hung” versus the string light hanging down and then looping back up, if that makes sense? I like the look of them just hanging but it seems like plugging a bunch of individual ones would be hard. Am I making this too complicated?!
In summary, the key factors to getting the backdrop and subject lit in a similar exposure zone is distance; The distance of the subject to the background and the distance of the light source to the subject. Decrease the distance of the subject to background and increase the distance of the main light to the subject to make this easier. The key factor for getting a soft and directional quality to the light is also distance, but it's the opposite. By getting the light closer to the subject, we can create a softer light with more directional qualities. Also remember that these qualities of the light are relative to the size of the light source. If you are using a smaller light source, you will need to get it in closer to hold those transitional values. If you are using a larger light source, you may be able to get your light further back and still hold those soft-light qualities. Also, if the examples and basic principles here make sense to you, you have kind of just learned the inverse square law!
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.
Some canvas backdrops include subtle patterns that provide an interesting but neutral background that doesn’t compete with a portrait subject for attention. Darker backgrounds can be used for low-key lighting, while a lighter, well-lit photo background can create a completely different high-key mood. Canvas backdrops at Adorama range in price from around $135.00 for a 5×7 to $270.00 for an 8×8-foot cloth.
I shoot videos and portraits of classical and acoustic guitarists and have a small collection of backdrops I carry around. The StudioPRO 5' x 7' Blue Collapsible Twist Muslin is one of my favorites: convenient to transport, fast to set up and easy on the eye. It's a blue muslin marbled with random patches of white and darker grayish blues, almost resembling the sky with popcorn clouds. I love how it photographs and my sample is a little darker and more attractive and than the product photos.
Display your photographic backdrops, floors, and floordrops using durable support equipment and accessories. You'll find a variety of stands and support kits that come with everything you need for mobile photography projects and studio setups. Many styles feature telescoping crossbars and adjustable bases to suit a variety of image heights and widths. Some support systems also feature multicolored chains so you can easily select the right background for your needs.