Keep the background bright white!
Bright, high-key shots are very fashionable for portraits. That clean and clinical background is so good at focussing attention on the subject. Without any knowledge of how its done a lot of photographers just get a dark grey background. It seems wrong. If you move the light closer all you do is make the subject brighter and the background darker. Hmm! Odd.
I came across this video a few days ago. White backgrounds are a useful technique and getting it right is quite easy with the right approach. In the video Mark Wallace shows you how to light the background properly and the type of lighting that gives a great light for the job.
If you don’t have a light meter it is not a problem. Mark uses a light meter but you can still get a great high-key result by taking a range of test shots applied to the light arrangements you are using. If you also use “Chimping” you can get the bright white result quite quickly. Remember, if you have your histogram on you can see the white background flashing in your camera back screen when you get it right. Then you will know you have a bright background. However, zoom in to make sure you do not get reflections of bright white on your subject. If you do get white halos or reflections then turn down the lighting slightly.
White Background :: Exploring Photography
White Background: Ep. 127: Exploring Photography with Mark Wallace: Adorama Photography TV
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