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 .
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!
A. Many photographers choose a continuous lighting set as a introductory set because of its low starting price. Additionally, continuous lighting allows you to control shadows, and to take the time to figure out the exact camera settings to use. However, continuous light generates heat, so if you’re shooting portrait photos, your subjects could grow uncomfortable.
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.
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.
Though I had an idea for the DIY photo booth backdrop a long time ago, it took awhile for me and my fiance to get around to constructing it. We decided we wanted a backdrop with a sheer white curtain and bright string lights. We settled on the string lights because of their warm vibe. Plus, we thought they tied in nicely with our loosely light-themed wedding.
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!

If you're looking for photography lighting kits for beginners, keep an eye out on product descriptions to make sure your kit contains these two essential elements. The type of lighting kit photography you'll need will be dependent upon whether you take your photos inside or outdoors. You can find affordable photography lighting kits for beginners on eBay with many options to chose from.


Made from styrene, a wrinkle-free plastic, this versatile backdrop can be used as a light table, prop setup or a seamless background. Props or people on the other side of the backdrop are seen as shapes and eerie silhouettes. Placed in front of a light, it delivers a frosted glass effect. You can cut Translum with scissors, so you can whittle down a roll into any shape you desire. It’s available in three grades: lightweight, for a soft light effect with a 3/4-stop light loss, medium grade that eliminates most of the shadows and delivers a 1.5-stop light loss and a heavy grade that knocks back two stops of light (this grade is recommended for shooting tables and is cleanable). Medium and lightweight grades are sold in 60-inch x 18-foot rolls while the heavyweight grade is available in 54-inch x 18-foot rolls.

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.
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!
AMAZING!!! I was worried about what the quality of this backdrop would be because of the price. The colors are BRIGHT and don't look faded in the picture!! It comes folded very small. I suggest hanging it asap. A little work with a steamer got the creases out with not much effort. It has small faded spots from the creases but i cant see them in the picture. I was worried the color would be lighter than the people in the picture but that is not the case. Great buy :)
Great for the price point! Will get lots of use out of it. Biggest issue was setting it up, theres absolutely no instructions that comes with this set. There is a piece of paper titled “instructions” BUT it’s literally just a list of what’s inside the packaging and not how to put it together. Had to watch a video online to figure it out. This was my first time setting up something like this. Also the polls are a little flimsy and I’m always worried about it falling over however again you pay what you get, don’t expect top of the line equipment when you’re purchasing relatively cheap stuff. Anyways thumbs up from me, it’s basically exactly what I needed.
These lights worked perfectly for what I purchased them for - as part of the backdrop for my Christmas pictures. They are a great, long length and width and shine brightly, but they are not overpowering. I had no issues stringing them up at all. They have a steady on mode as well as several different blinking modes. My only complaint is that the plug did not fit into my standard outlet - it was very loose and kept sliding out, so I had to tape it in to use it. Also, there is no off switch, so these have to be unplugged when not in use. Like I said, though, they worked great for my intended purpose.
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!
This is a durable and well made photography back drop. All stitching is tight with no loose threads. It includes 5 spring clamps for hanging, or it can be hung using the sewn in rod pockets. It's made of 100% cotton and is a nice weight without being too heavy. Overall I'm very happy with this backdrop and recommend it to anyone looking for a nice white one.
The fabric has a slight odor similar to vinegar and evaporated milk but airs out if you leave it unfolded a few days. The fabric, as expected, is lightweight but decent quality cotton. By definition Muslin is lightweight cotton cloth and, yep, it's thin so a backing layer is necessary if used against a bright light or window (e.g., my uploaded image). It ... full review

This Studio portrait umbrella Kit is easy to use and setup. These lights work great with digital cameras. It is ideal for all level photographers. It is a complete kit with a complete background supporting system with case. 3 section cross bar open up to 9ft and 8ft height. THREE 6' x 9' muslin backdrop(black, white and green) and a continuous lighting umbrellas kit.
Users love the portable carrying bag, but some do note that it’s not heavy-duty or suitable for heavy fabrics. The ePhoto support stand kit is made of lightweight aluminum for portability, and you can adjust the height up to 8 ft. and the width to 10 ft. Another great thing about this product is that you can set it up in minutes, store it in the included carry bag and take it with you.
I recently bought this 3 days ago and used it to shoot 38 headshots and a group photo for a university. The images came out fantastic!! I was amazed that the light quality was excellent and the light stands were sturdy without sandbags to fasten it. I bought a used kit but it was greatly taken cared of. I wanted an easy portable light kit and this is perfect very light weight and cost effective. Backgroynd stand is great, Muslim is thin in black but just double it up and youll be fine for headshots.
Last is the Julius Studio, which is another crossbar set up that spans up to 10 ft. Like the others, this one also comes with a carry bag and the necessary clamps for securing your backdrop of choice. Also, like the others, this one is made of lightweight tubing that makes it easy to carry. Lastly, while users said this was easy to set up and use, they recommend using sandbags or some other type of weight to keep the system secure due to the light weight of the tubing.
The StudioPRO 3000W's included backdrops add a lot of value and a professional touch that users love. The 10-foot power cord often eliminates the need for an extension, and can reduce anxiety over tripping on a taut line. The lightweight equipment and small case store easily, and if you travel a lot, you would be hard-pressed to find a more portable model.
A purchaser comments that the adjustable backdrop stand is sturdy enough to do the job and that it’s easy to put it together. He adds that it’s light and easy to transport and that he highly recommends it to anyone looking for portable background stands. Another reviewer shares that he bought three adjustable support frames and that he is pleased with the construction and the stability.
Overall I am very happy with this purchase. I wanted to get a decent lighting studio with backdrop without dropping a lot of cash in for now. I will say when ordering it I was very hesitant. I have found things that are priced cheap,are generally cheap quality. This I think was fair. Everything was in the bag, all lights worked, no bent poles, or broken lights. The fabric of the muslin is rather thin, but I had no problem with transparency on the white. My only complaints are that the bag's strap feels very frail in the stitching where it connects to the bag, which I can easily fix with a needle and thread, and the aluminum poles for the stands/poles are very light and tip with ease. I'm sure a few sandbags hanging would fix that though. Other than that I am very happy with my purchase. I have attached a photo from a quick shoot I did to test the kit out with my oldest husky. A good product for the price, and someone wanting to keep it cheap and simple for a while.
Stock up on extra drive components such as chains, switches, and weights, so you can quickly replace broken or missing parts. Be sure to keep plenty of spare clips, hooks, and brackets on hand so portrait backgrounds and video backdrops stay in place during shoots. Maintain clean and organized work spaces by storing paper rolls and mounting poles on wall-mounted and freestanding storage racks.
×