One of the advantages of using a chroma key background is that it can shorten production time by doing away with the need to change from one background to another. This kind of photo backdrop allows the photographer to freely take pictures without thinking of what background will best fit the image, as they can decide on that part later in the post-processing stage.
This kind of fabric has an amazing quality that absorbs light from flashes around the studio. It enables you to have a pitch-black (if using black velour) portrait background that will not reflect the light from your flash or lighting equipment. This way, you don’t have to worry about the direction of light affecting the background because it leaves no detail.
Among a raft of new products, Denny’s Fair Tale Trail puts your subject in a whimsical (dare we say Hobbit-esque) setting. The backdrop is available in your choice of three materials: Freedom Cloth, which is a wrinkle-free polyster that’s washable and dryer safe; Twist Flex, which uses the Freedom Cloth material but mounts it to a wire frame that can be folded down tight if you envision travelling a lot with the backdrop. Lastly, it’s available in canvas, which is a more delicate backdrop that ships with a wood mounting and Velcro straps. Sizes vary with Freedom Cloth, giving you the widest selection of size options.
The type of material that you choose for photo backdrops can impact the photos that you take in several ways. Materials such as cotton, muslin, or canvas, may absorb and soften your studio lighting whereas materials such as vinyl, polyester, and velvet may reflect some of your studio lighting in your photos. Different situations will call for different photo material options, so it's a good idea to have a range of colors and prints in different material types. Many of these materials are available in this eBay category. Other photo background materials may include:
Vinyl backdrops are thick, rolled and durable, and are recommended for professional studio work. They generally come in solids, but there are a few with printed patterns that can be very inexpensive. While most vinyl backgrounds have a glossy sheen, there are some (including a recently announced line by Savage, which includes the Savage Matte Finish Gray Infinity Series vinyl background) that have a matte finish to eliminate glare and reflections.
I'm a professional photographer and purchased this on the chance that it was as advertised. I shoot 8th grade graduation dances and have always used a black backdrop to make the images "pop". I was worried in buying this that there would be a lot of maintenance in getting the wrinkles out...worked perfect from package to hanging on the frame! Awesome product and well worth the money!
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.

The paper is awesome and thick and great for a photography backdrop. The problem I had with it was no statement letting me know that you cannot use it on a regular stand or the paper will unwind uncontrollably and end up in a crinkled mess on the floor. Half of my roll spun out onto the floor as soon as I tried pulling a little bit out to do a session. Thankfully I was preparing for the session about 15 minutes before the appointment time and I was able to wind it up, cut off the creased parts and rig up something with some painters tape to temporarily keep it in place. Because of this I was unable to change out my backdrop during the session without risk of it unraveling again with my clients here at my place. In order to use this ... full review
The fill light for this shoot is also a Profoto D1 1,000W strobe in a Westcott Apollo Orb, which is camera right and with the light sitting about waist height. This light is also pulled back a bit further than the main to give a wider spill. Since I am using my lights to do two jobs, lighting the subject and the background, I am not gridding and instead placing them so that one edge of the modifier is pointing towards the edge of the seamless and the other is towards the subject.
The key to getting those gorgeous big bubbles of light in the background is to locate your subject a decent distance from the lights while at the same time positioning yourself as close to your subject as you can be to get the shot you want and setting the aperture on your camera just about as wide open as you can. The further away your subject is from the lights, the closer your are to your subject and the wider the aperture…..the bigger the lights.
If you do many in-studio portrait sessions, you probably have a lot of space set aside for background materials, props, and supports. Add to your stash with canvas backdrops for photography, and selections made of durable, low-maintenance materials, such as cotton and wrinkle-resistant polyester. Several backgrounds come on rolls so you can mount them to autopoles and smoothly swap out designs between poses. Seamless paper works particularly well for everyday needs, as you can roll sheets out to the desired length and then reuse or trim away pieces for easy recycling. Muslin photo and video backdrops feature non-reflective surfaces that diffuse light more naturally, which can help keep the focus on your subject. If you prefer materials that allow for fast and efficient cleanup, vinyl and PVC backgrounds are a solid choice, especially when you use them in potentially messy situations involving pets, babies, and toddlers.
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