BetterPhoto Q&A
Category: New Questions

Photography Question 
Mike Carpenter
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/9/2004
 

Black Backgrounds


How do you get the background to be a solid black? I take a photo at home with natural light and use a sheet in the background but when I look at the photo on my computer I can see the sheet. I have tried to change from f3.5 to f11 and it seems to always look bad. Help.


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2/20/2005 7:47:51 PM

 
Gregory LaGrange
BetterPhoto Member Since: 11/11/2003
gregorylagrange.org
  It's the difference between the light level that's on the subject and what's on the background that makes it black. Block some light from shining on the background if you have to.


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2/20/2005 8:05:10 PM

 
Bob Cammarata
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/17/2003
  Stick with the wider aperture setting and get more distance between the subject and the background. This will help to "iron out" the wrinkles in the fabric. As Greg mentioned, angle the light(s) to illuminate only the subject.


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2/20/2005 11:36:44 PM

 
Gregg    Go to a fabric store and get a black cloth. Try a real flat black material that doesn't wrinkle. Black sheet paper doesn't work as well.


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2/22/2005 8:16:47 AM

 
Shirley D. Cross-Taylor
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/7/2001
Contact Shirley
Shirley's Gallery
  All good answers. However, I've had the best results with a black Velux blanket. It is cheaper than velvet (a single size can be found for $20) and less apt to attract lint. Also, it can be thrown in the washer and dryer.


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2/22/2005 1:32:09 PM

 
Lorraine Jones
BetterPhoto Member Since: 3/10/2004
  I have been using black velvet, and it has always worked for me. Black velvet absorbs light, so you get a true black when using it as background. Even if it has wrinkles from folding, it still doesn't show in the photograph. It does attract lint but that doesn't seem to be a problem - it doesn't show in my photos.


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2/22/2005 6:51:02 PM

 
Mike Carpenter
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/9/2004
  Thank you. everyone. I've tried a couple of these tips, and they are working great.


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2/22/2005 8:18:30 PM

 
Gregory LaGrange
BetterPhoto Member Since: 11/11/2003
gregorylagrange.org
  I hope you were using black fabric to start out with.


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2/22/2005 9:03:10 PM

 
Skyy McKendry
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/19/2005
  This is SO simple - I can't believe everyone doesn't know this! You must use either velour or velvet (Velux is a synthetic Velvet that works great too). All of these fabrics absorb light. No matter how many times you change your camera settings or how far away you are from the background, a black sheet will always reflect light. I've gotten to within inches of my black Velour backdrop, and it always remains perfectly black.


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2/23/2005 12:19:32 AM

 
Dan Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/4/2005
 
 
 
black velvet works great for me also if I rember to clean off the lint... see picture...these flowers are laying on velvet.


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2/23/2005 6:54:08 PM

 
Dan Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/4/2005
 
 
 
sample


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2/23/2005 7:00:32 PM

 
Dan Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/4/2005
 
 
  sample
sample
flowers set on black velvet with candle's @5 ea. for fill light ... hope this helps...
© Dan Smith
Canon EOS Digital ...
 
 
sample


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3/2/2005 1:02:06 AM

 
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