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The Little Studio System is a must-have backdrop solution for photographing newborns, infants, toddlers, pets, and products.  The Little Studio is essentially a 3.5 x 3.5 x 3.5-foot room in a box. This system is completely collapsible and can be paired with hundreds of available backdrops and floordrops. These backdrops attach to the system with Velcro, allowing for instant set changes and clean up.
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:
Like other photo backdrop materials, polyester also comes in various sizes and colors. An advantage of this fabric is that it’s wrinkle-free. If there are heavy wrinkles, it can easily be removed by warm ironing from the back or by steam ironing it when it’s hung. It also includes rod holes that are perfect for hanging, especially if you don’t have a place to store it after using.
In this SOOC shot, you can see just how down and dirty this setup was. The backdrop is not pulled out very far and taped down only in a couple of spots. In the top left edge of the image you can see the corner of the 50 inch Apollo. This also shows that the right edge of the light is hitting the subject, allowing for a soft feathered look, but more importantly for this setup, it's allowing the rest of the box to light our background.
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.

When I want new portraits of my kids, I never head to the photography studio. Instead, I head to the kitchen or front room, where I get great window light. I’m willing to spend a lot more time than most photographers would with my kids to get just the photo I want, and I often photograph them right in front of a blank wall for an easy background. This can get old pretty quickly, though, so I’ve collected 20 different options for easy DIY backdrops you can use in your home.


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.

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.
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