I saw textured backdrops being used by some photographers that I loved - Jan C Schlegel, Dayron Vera, Clay Cook and the most famous user of a backdrop like this of course, Irving Penn (his was used for over 50 years). I felt that they looked so much more raw and interesting than a normal paper backdrops that are available to buy. There is a character to them that adds to the photo in such a subtle way, but it is insanely effective. I had found some amazing companies making these kind of backdrops, one of my favourites is Unique Backdrops - however, as I am just starting out, they were a little out of my budget, so I decided to try and make my own! I have linked all photographers/companies I have just mentioned down below.
Now I totally understand that the use of this will be completely different from what I usually do, but I just wanted to try my hand at it. I follow some absolutely amazing and inspiring portrait photographers who produce some stunning work - I wanted to see what I could do myself. There’s definitely nothing wrong with trying out areas of photography that you aren’t usually working in, it is all learning at the end of the day.
Check out the images down below to see how I made one of these backdrops. I bought a 3m x 2m piece of canvas, white & black paint, a paint roller with a long handle (so I don’t walk on the canvas), and a sponge. My girlfriend, Ellie, who is a graphic designer suggested the sponge and it what the piece of kit that made the look of it so much better than if I had just tried to used a roller or a paintbrush. This suggestion along with some others of hers really made all the difference to making an amazing looking backdrop.
This backdrop turned out so much better than I was expecting - it will look amazing with some people in front of it. I will definitely be trying it out over the next week to see what I can do. I’ll probably post some results here!
View Unique Backdrops here: http://unique-backdrops.com/
View Jan Schlegel’s work here: http://www.janschlegel.photography/
View Dayron Vera’s work here: http://www.dayronveraphotography.com/
View Clay Cook’s work here: https://www.claycookphoto.com/
View Irving Penn’s work here: https://irvingpenn.org/