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Thread: Photography...how to have no background

  1. #1
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    Default Photography...how to have no background

    .........................................
    Last edited by ben b; 13-09-2009 at 02:58 AM.

  2. #2
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    Wooo mate - it's 1 in the morning and I've just read your post after a very long day( I started work at 7.30 this morning).

    I think I understand what you are talking about in general terms but probably need to read through it a couple of times to be sure.. Don't go far, I may have a lot of questions in the morning when the coffee kicks in.

    Annie xXx

    All things are possible - if you look at them the right way!

  3. #3
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    I love the sound of that ben! I must give it a go! It almost sounds too simple to be true...but then all the best ideas are the pure and simple ones!!

  4. #4
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    This a kind of example of the above technique...not the most amazing image but I think you can get the idea

  5. #5
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    You can also do it simply by increasing the exposure compensation, and placing the item directly on a white background. I used to take some pictures this way(a sheet of thick a3 paper inside my light tent), not so much now though, but a couple of old examples are below:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails p&p.jpg   bespoke.jpg  

  6. #6
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    I think I might give this a try. thanks

  7. #7
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    Yep,

    It made much more sense second time around with the addition of caffine, I going to give it a try at the weekend.
    Annie xXx

    All things are possible - if you look at them the right way!

  8. #8
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    Blimey, I must try this as I just can't get my backgrounds whiter than white.
    Thanks for the tip.

    Mind you, I don't think that works for everything - it can look a bit spooky seeing a necklace seemingly floating in the ether.....or is that just me!

  9. #9
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    The most common reasons for murky white backgrounds are underexposure and incorrect white balance. If you underexpose the shot (which the camera will do for itself unless you tell it - by increasing exposure compensation - that the background is white and you want it to stay that way), the white will come out a little grey and grubby looking. If you don't use the right white balance setting for the light source you use, you can get a colour cast to it too. If your lighting isn't totally even, you'll get patches of 'grey' still showing.

    I have a tutorial with these points illustrated: http://www.boo.myzen.co.uk/artisan.html

    If you really want to drop out your background to white, using a little too much exposure compensation will over-expose the shot and get an over- bight background, but that may also be at the espense of detail in your piece, where light areas will also be over-exposed and the piece may look lighter than it is.

    Perhaps the best way is as the OP suggested is to over-light the background itself, so that your item itself can be exposed for correctly - thereby losing no detail in it. I have an old lightbox I use for such images - I can only find one on-line just now to illustrate this:

    http://www.zenadsl5251.zen.co.uk/pho.../rasps7782.jpg

    This was taken on white paper on top of a lightbox - with lighting applied to the raspberries from above too. So you light your background and subject as two separate entities. If you don't have a lightbox (mine is an old advertising sign from outside a shop, I scubbed the lettering off - I got it for nowt and have been using it for over 20 years now) you can suspend some glass or perspex on some books or something and put a lamp underneath it.

    As lesley said, I don't like how they float with no shadows - they were for a particular brief - but I prefer something solid under my pieces and have decided now not to even try for white backgrounds, I prefer interesting textures and a bit of staging instead.

  10. #10
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    That's a fantastic tutorial Boo...mind you - it will take me a month of Sundays to read and digest that lot! I love the fact that you don't have to go out and spend loads on equipment...excellent stuff..thank you!!

    And thanks Ben too for starting the thread off in the first place...

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