Don’t Photograph White Objects on White Backgrounds

Last week, I showed a sample of my attempts to photograph objects using different background colors. I have another brief installment to share.

Photographing Boy Scout Slides
f/3.5, exp 1/10 sec, exp bias +1, ISO 80, Center Weight Average Metering

I propped up this neckerchief slide inside a lightbox. To do this, I placed a piece of fiberfill in the box and then covered it with a white cloth. I put the slide in front of the cloth so it could lean against the soft support. This looks really nice. However, I really want the white slide to stand out from the background. White on white rarely has the contrast necessary to pop the object. So, I decided to try the high contrast of a black backdrop.

Photographing Boy Scout Slides
f/3.5, exp 1/4 sec, ISO 80, Pattern Metering

I LOVE it. Sure, I could have created some sort of prop, but to me, I like the contrast of the white object on the black background.

When deciding which background to use, I don’t have a hard and fast rule. I do know that it depends on a) your particular taste and b) how much contrast you want. A colored background can be used to set a mood or tell a story (such as a red background to represent a sorority’s colors).

Play around and experiment. I am so glad I learned about playing around with the camera settings in the lesson from my friend regarding the trophies. I see how it is starting to pay off.

2 thoughts on “Don’t Photograph White Objects on White Backgrounds

  1. Those photo backdrops are so impressive. I think they make many events have more pizzazz for people who attend them. Perhaps they're greater in scope than what I need, but if I take off in this field, I'll give them a second glance.

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