One of the most significant features of any studio is the ability to have control over the light. The other is the choice of background. Backgrounds vary in complexity and construction. Often the background consists of a simple sheet of paper or fabric backdrop. These come in a variety of colors and textures providing a wide range of choices for image creation. It is not always practical to have every type and color of backdrop on hand.
Fortunately, there is an alternative to having multiple colors of paper or fabric. Enter the gray backdrop. Light takes on the color of any object it hits, this is referred to as producing a “color cast”. Since white, gray and black objects don’t have a “color” as such they do not produce a color cast. Gray backdrops are particularly good at taking on the color of colored light that hits them.
The examples above are the result of colored light hitting a gray backdrop. The intensity of the light can be varied to get various color densities in the background. Colored gels are placed in front of the light source(s) to color the light. The variety of color combinations are limited only by one’s imagination.
Another option to achieve multiple backgrounds with a simple gray backdrop is to change it at the post-production stage.
The gray color lends itself to blending with colored images as it does not influence the actual color of the image or pattern being blended in, just the intensity of the pattern. The images above were photographed against a gray paper backdrop and the backgrounds added in later.
Using these techniques opens up a host of options for the look and style of the image one creates while having the convenience of needing just one backdrop. Please stop by www.pixyst.com to see more examples of my photography or contact me via firstname.lastname@example.org to find out a host of imaging solutions I can put at your service.