A great photography background is the foundation of a great still life image. We all use backgrounds … weathered wood, white foam core, or simply areas of our home.
I love to use my mantle because it’s a true part of my life. With it’s white shelf, and the low-key, mossy green wall behind it, it’s the perfect starting point for a great image. There’s also a window to the right which lets in some killer light, especially in the winter.
The pretty “painting” is a canvas I found at HomeSense … it was fairly inexpensive and works not only for decorating my home, it’s the perfect photography background for my beautiful globeflowers. For late summer, I could change up the flowers for green grass, or wheat, or oats, picked from fields nearby.
To give the painting a bit more “oomph” I used a tiny bit of hot glue in each corner and glued it to the wooden background, which is actually a framed mirror. I can easily pop the painting off the wood and replace it with another canvas for a different look.
Here’s another example using my mantle, a different canvas, and some globe thistle (not on wood frame):
So, I’ve been using canvases in my still life images … but the thing is … they’re mostly abstracts which I’ve come to really love. They are also quite inexpensive, and can be used in your home … bonus! When your not using it for a still life, simply hang it in a room somewhere! Our guest bedrooms have never looked so good!
My mantle is simply one still life image after another … changing with the seasons. Even my Quirky Autumn Mantel is a still life in real life.
Here are four more great ideas for photography backgrounds:
- This tutorial by Cristina Colli is fabulous! In fact, it’s how I got started on the canvases … and I do plan to follow her tutorial and make my own real soon.
- Scrapbook paper.
- One of my favourite shoots was done on the back of a cork board … it was all I had at the time.
- Breadboards …
So look around, turn things over, look for surfaces that are not obvious at first glance … it’s amazing what you can come up with!
Later this week, I have a photography background that I’ll be sharing with The Studio | Online for the “Stories” prompt. I cannot wait to tell you about it!
I have an exciting new series coming up this autumn and I’m really hoping you’ll join me. It’s going to be quite different and presented in a way I’ve never done before … I’m excited … and scared … more on that later.
Have a wonderful Monday!
oh my gosh… all beautiful… but that last one….
LOVE this all so much Barb.
Thank you Kim!
Wow! I was wondering about the background you used behind the rusty blue colander. I really love the colours and textures in it and now I know! I’m going to be looking at things a little differently when it comes to finding a good background.
The last one is my favorite as well. I love anything from the kitchen and it doesn’t get any better than brown eggs (unless it’s blue ones. . . . I love the blue ones. ;) )
Thank you Rosa! Such a simple thing, isn’t it!
I’ve intended for about a year now to paint some BGs. Maybe I’ll get around to it sooner than later. I do like your abstract canvases. Have a great week!
Cathy H. says
Thanks for the wonderful ideas for backgrounds. I’ll be keeping my eyes open!
What a great post ! I love the idea of using canvas, thanks for sharing, Barb . I’m also intrigued about your new series, hopefully it will give me the push I need !
Love all the textures !
You post today is just the inspiration I needed. I love the idea of using abstract paintings as backgrounds. Never thought of that before…
It’s an inspiring post, Barb. I love the idea of using such a canvas as a background and I like how you combined the backgrounds and the props. I started shooting still life images at the beginning of this year and still struggle with the backgrounds, as you say, they are very important!
Karen Olson says
Love them all so much, what a great idea! Especially love the abstracts as a background. Maybe I will try painting a few this winter. Looking forward to your fall project.
Oh my goodness! Total inspiration here! I am itching to try these ideas- so different and so fabulous looking! You are so creative! I love them all- and keep going back to the colander image.
We were thinking of redoing our lavatory and looking at marble tiles for the floor. In the end we decided to wait, but when I asked at the tile store for discarded samples…out they came with a gorgeous 14″ x 24″ piece of marble!!! I’ve been using it all summer! Then, my daughter couldn’t use several all white geometric wall “boxes” and asked me to keep them. Perfect. Yes, you just never know what will be your next background or prop!
Oh Libby! that’s amazing – how wonderful to have found that marble! I’m going to have to go to a Home Depot and pretend I’m redoing my kitchen lol!
So many beautiful still life images, it’s hard to pick a favourite! Love all your backdrops :)
Thank you for mentioning my blog post, I’m glad you like it!