Thursday, July 2, 2009

Tools: Backdrops (for sale!)

Many photographers will at one time or another work indoors with backdrops and studio lighting. Over the years, photographers will build quite a collection of various backdrop materials, be it seamless paper or dyed or painted muslin or canvas.

My first backdrop was some white muslin I bought at Wal-Mart in the sewing section. My second backdrop was a grey backdrop I dyed myself from the same white Muslin. I quickly realized my talents did not lie in the backdrop production area, so I started buying them.

My favorite working backdrops came from Sky High Backgrounds (800-351-2158). They are heavy duty and very color saturated. I schlepped three of their backdrops home from the PPA show in San Antonio during the 2007 "Ice Storm" convention. I recently learned about Backgrounds by Cole (800-926-2653) here in Western PA and I have a flyer of theirs on my bulletin board. They may get my next order. I also use the heavy duty 10x20 white vinyl backdrop from Denny Manufacturing
(800-844-5616) for much of my high key work, and their flat black for black background work. The black is also good to hang behind another backdrop if there is a bright light source behind the backdrop stand, such as a window.

I tend to prefer dyed muslin, as the colors are vibrant and the backdrops easy to move and set up. They do need some occasional steaming and cleaning, but they are portable to some degree. I take a couple of boxes of backdrops on location when I do my senior photography. The student picks a couple of colors and we hang the backdrops while they change clothing. We have done black, white/high key, red, blue, beige, camo and many more. I'm probably up to 10 backdrops in my "kit" by now.

Which leads me to this post. I have two 10'x20' painted muslin backdrops that I no longer use. One features shades of grey, called "Pearl and Grey", and the other shades of light blue and green, named "Mint and Blue". Think of the second one as a great set for "Little Mermaid", though many other colors will go well with it. I purchased these in 2007 from Owen's Originals (800-767-3122) for around $100 each. I'm selling them for $60 each plus shipping, or both for $100 plus shipping. They are in great shape, needing only to be steamed before use. First person to contact me gets them.

The photo of them folded up is actually a bit more abstract than functional, but I didn't have the space and time to unfurl them and give them proper illumination.

Contact me at 814-881-2840 or email if you are interested.

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