How to Choose Backdrops for a Professional Portrait

A backdrop is an important component of any professional portrait. In order to capture the subject in the best possible light and to produce a photograph that is exceptional, you must be skilled in choosing backdrops that best fit the essence of the portrait. Backdrops enhance photographs. Here is a step by step guide on choosing the right backdrop for your professional portrait.

Materials You Will Need:

  • Backdrop
  • Pen and Paper
  • Lighting equipment
  • Photography Studio
  • Subject to photograph

Step 1 - Plan your Photo Shoot Details

Every backdrop is different as is every subject. Some portraits may include human subjects and other portraits include inanimate objects. The purpose of any good photography shoot is to capture the moment, preserve time, and give the individuals memories for years to come. A backdrop for a special event should be distinct enough to tell you what the portrait is all about. For example, if you are shooting a formal wedding scene, you may wish to use a church or a garden as your backdrop. If you are putting together a portrait of a child's ice skating routine, you may wish to include a back drop of a skating rink or an outdoor winter scene. Maybe you are photographing a baby's first birthday and wish to include a backdrop of a birthday cake with one lit candle. Use neutral colors as a backdrop for professional shoots. Use your imagination, your creativity and your skill as a photographer.

Step 2 - Use a Background to Enhance your Subject

Put a background together that shows off your subjects' best features. Make sure your back drop compliments clothing, make-up and the overall appearance of your subject. Try not to add clashing and inappropriate background drops for your portrait photography shoot.

Step 3 - Carefully Prepare Your Backdrop

A portrait shoot can both occur inside and outside. Make sure you prepare your backdrop thoroughly. Less is generally more in a portrait. You want to focus on your subject rather than your backdrop. Don't add too much clutter otherwise people will pay more attention to the stuff in the background than to the subject. 

If you are shooting in your studio, remove all wrinkles and creases from your backdrop. Replace the backdrop if there are notable stains or faded sections.

Step 4 - Ask Your Subject

You are the professional, but as we all know, everyone has different opinions. You need to work with your subject so that you include their ideas and opinions. Tell your subject the truth. They are paying you for your professionalism, style and creativity. It is important they trust that you know what you are doing in the art of portrait photography.

Popular Cameras for High Quality Photos: