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Sunday, 30 May 2010

Tips On Photography Backgrounds And Props

Tips on photography backgrounds and propsPictures eternalize those very memorable moments shared with your loved ones. Taking pictures is not just all about clicking that button and smiling at the camera. There are many things to consider in order to get the perfect shot.

Backgrounds and props as well as the people’s attitudes and expressions should be appropriate for the picture. As the photographer, it is up to you to arrange these things so that you can capture the best possible portrait. It will be up to you how the outcome will be so you have to be extra careful in thinking about and applying these factors.

What’s that behind you?

The backgrounds that you will use should not take the attention away from the person or people you are shooting. It should be something that will create an aura or mood without changing the atmosphere of your portraits.

Before the onset of digital photography, muslin was the most common backdrop material. This is especially true for school pictures such as yearbooks. Muslin limits creativity though. The dull colors and design attract the eyes of viewers into the subject but it does not give you much of a choice. And, the problem with muslin is, if the subject is wearing the same color as the backdrop! That would spell disaster.

Here are some tips you have to consider:

  • The background color should be not too bright. It would be really disastrous to have neon colors and complicated designs that make you dizzy like an optical illusion!
  • Know what objects in the background should be or not be included. An antique, intricate statue studded with gems will take the attention away from subjects and ruin that once in a lifetime family reunion.
  • Choose the right background for the occasion. It would be very inappropriate to have beach background if you are having a birthday party, right? Of course, use your better judgment. Wedding photos can have backgrounds embracing romantic places and sunset settings. It is up to you and your subjects.

As technology advanced, the world of photography has been greatly improved as well. The possibilities of digital photography are boundless when it comes to backgrounds. You can shoot your subjects in a plain white background then add the setting afterwards. With a great variety of backgrounds to choose from, you can take them around the world or better still, rent them.

Accents and Props – Added Touches

The use of props has started since the early days of photography. You might see flowers and fruits as props in old photos. Then it evolved into something that depicts a certain place or event. Pastoral photography has been a trend in the early times and the use of shepherds clothing and crooks and even live sheep had been utilized to make the scenery look real.

For today’s photography, there are some points that I would like to suggest to you when using props.

1. Appropriate props should be used for the right atmosphere. Be selective and think about it.

2. The colors should not be contrasting with the background although there are some situations that might use a splash of color. Enough to accent the portrait without attracting too much attention away from the subject.

3. Seasonal props will greatly add to the atmosphere of the holiday such as Santa hats and Easter eggs.

4. Use age appropriate props. Do not use cartoon characters since these become outdated through time.

Props used in family portraits are part of the background such as a fence or gazebo. When you admire a good shot, you do not only see the smiles but the added touches as well.

So, I hope these tips are of assistance to you when capturing those moments that are special and memorable.

By Roy Barker

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