Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Photo Shoot Backgrounds...

Choosing Backgrounds for a Photo Shoot - what NOT to do ~ Threading My Way

I know next to nothing about photography and taking great photos. Sometimes, I'm lucky and I can fluke a good shot, but it's definitely a hit and miss process.

Choosing Backgrounds for a Photo Shoot - what NOT to do ~ Threading My Way

When I started taking photos for the Beach Hut Cushions tutorial, I thought I had the perfect backdrop; a maroon blanket. My thinking was that the blanket colour would pick up colours in the cushion and secondly, it was a blanket that one might use on the lounge with these cushions. 

Wrong thinking!!! I only took two photos with the maroon blanket. Just looking at them on the camera's LCD screen was enough to see that the background was way too dark.


Mr TMW had suggested a light blue background... can't remember the explanation he gave, but there was a technical reason for the light blue. I was surprised at the difference between the two photos. Not only is the background lighter, but the cushions themselves are lighter and show up better. 

I didn't end up using the photo above, in the actual blog post, but I've included it here, as the photo is taken at the same angle and with exactly the same lighting, as the one with the maroon blanket.


This was the photo I ended up using, because there's less shadow in the background and the angle looks better.


The photo I was most pleased with, however, was the shot of the back of the cushions. It was a pure fluke!!! Now I have to figure out just why this photo works. Either that, or just keep playing.

Most of you are probably painfully aware of how the background colour can change the whole photo, but I wasn't. This is definitely not a how to on photography, just something I learnt by chance.

... Pam

13 comments:

  1. I'm definitely no expert, but photography is always all about the light. I'm a little bit hit and miss too and I frequently take many more photos than I need when shooting indoors because it's so hard to get it right.

    I try to shoot in natural light with the subject facing a window so that the maximum amount of light falls on the subject. I think this is why your photo of the back of the cushions works so well - because they are well lit!

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  2. Thanks for sharing your photography experiences, Pam. I can use all the tips I can get! Your cushions are sweet!

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  3. I recently saw a pic on a blog (cannot remember which one now) but the girl explained her set up. She had a white sheet or something (great memory of mine) with a light behind it. All that stood out in her photo was her and her outfit...nothing else! It was really nice. My photography is hit or miss. My camera is really acting up. I've switched to taking pics with my Ipad now because I have some fun aps that I can write with on them and dress them up a little. My kids have been showing me how to do that. LOL

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  4. Hi Pam! It feels good to have a nice photo of your work. I once took a private lesson from a photographer specifically regarding photographing my sewing creations indoors. Several of her tips included using a tripod to avoid blurred photos, using manual mode and controlling your shutter speed and aperture, which is a bit time consuming, using more than one light source to avoid shadows, using "daylight" light bulbs for correct light balance, using indirect light, using a large white board or a board covered with aluminum foil to reflect light and softly fill in the shadows. It's very rewarding to get a good shot but it does take patience, practice, and a critical eye. I wasn't patient enough to get good at it!

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  5. Your cushions look so good Pam, they deserve to be shown off! I try to be aware of my photography but sometimes there just isn't time to take anything other than a couple of not very exciting shots!

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  6. Yeesh! Sounds like a lot to learn, Keren! For now, I'll stick to crossing my fingers whenever I snap away. :)

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  7. Photography has definitely been trial and error for me. Lately I think the items in my shop are popping better thanks to what I have learned about photography. It is important to learn what works for you. Your pillows look great!

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  8. Good lessons! I'm trying to learn more at the moment. Venturing into manual mode too!

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  9. Thank you for this post. Textiles are very hard to photograph. I have had many `interesting` experiences even with professional photographers, whose work made my fiberart look `strange`. Thus i went to our local photo shop and asked the person to take photos of my art as if they were `brides`, this worked and my Catalog has great photos. I do take photos of my sewing and i think i found a good place in the house to do it with a light colored closet as background with a place for the coat hanger......
    mirjam
    mirjam

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  10. I know I have to break out my cameras manual, but you know- it's on the list. Light is brutal now that we are moving back into our dark time of year I'm reminded how hard it is to take pictures without the light! What a huge difference with your backgrounds!

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  11. The pictures with the different backgrounds definitely illustrate how important backgrounds are! My challenge is picking a location at home that isn't cluttered.lol

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  12. This is good advice, and looking at the pictures I can see the difference. It's amazing the results you get, just changing the background. I recently did a light box to take photos, and gray days are no longer an obstacle to taking pictures, I will show the box in one of my next blog post.I take this opportunity to tell you that I love the pillows! Have a beatiful day!!!!
    Marisa from http://passionetcouture.blogspot.ca/

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  13. I am really not an expert in photography but I believe that choosing a good backdrop is really very essential. Backgrounds play a very important role. Unless they are carefully chosen, the end result can be disastrous if you match it with a wrong color. It is also important to examine the surrounding scenery in relation to the subject. Moreover, photography backdrops are meant to enhance the photo, not be the primary point of attraction. -www.electricavenue.net

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