how would you get a black background effect?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by zandman, Jul 29, 2008.

  1. zandman

    zandman TPF Noob!

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    how do you do it like making the background black.
    what's the technique to get this effect except using photoshop.
    for example, taking a macro shot like a flower and the background would be black? i can't explain it clear enough..
    thanks.
     
  2. Moglex

    Moglex TPF Noob!

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    The easiest way is to take the shot using flash with the subject as far away from any background as possible. Using a black backdrop will mean the subject can be nearer the background without it (in this case the backdrop) becoming visible.
     
  3. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    A black or dark background is very important to helping get this effect - I agree with the flash comments - you need light on your subject else the shot will be all dark.
    Once you have the shot it really helps if you were shooting in RAW mode - as in RAW editing you can adjust the exposure, contrast and blacks (definatly boost these first) to help attain the black background.

    Its called - lowkey shooting (or low-key) if you want to search more -- the opposite - high key - is where you have a white background
     
  4. K_Pugh

    K_Pugh No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Yup i can third that notion - flash makes it much much easier, you can get away without a black background if you direct the light properly.
     
  5. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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  6. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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  7. nynfortoo

    nynfortoo TPF Noob!

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    Just leave the lens cap on, Jerry. You don't have to faff around with flashes then.
     
  8. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    LMAOOO...hahaha... err... how do you faff? :lol:
     
  9. nynfortoo

    nynfortoo TPF Noob!

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    You mess around, but use a British accent :)
     
  10. Moglex

    Moglex TPF Noob!

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    Indeed, you just neeed increase the (distance to wall) to (distance to subject) ratio (where the distances are the distances of the light source).
     
  11. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    :thumbup: It's all about the light ratio. It only takes about 4, maybe 5 stops of light difference to blacken a white wall completely.
     
  12. Moglex

    Moglex TPF Noob!

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    Quite, so putting some numbers to it, if your flash has a guide number of 11 ft and you were taking a shot of a subject at 1 foot, using f11, you would need a five stop difference to black out the background. That would mean the background should have an indicated exposure of f2 and to get that exposure with a guide number of 11 would require a distance of five and a half feet.

    Obviously that calculation assumes similar reflectivity of background and subject.
     

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