Photo Boards® make capturing small lifestyle scenes easy! They simply lay flat or prop up, but I have some clever tricks that you can use for making your photo boards look even more like real texture!
Size and Distance
When you use a fake backdrop, it is important that it fills the background area of your scene. Photo Boards® are designed to be used in contact or very close to your subject as shown and not at a long distance away - otherwise they will appear too small in the background.
If you are unsure on sizing, please measure before ordering - create a 40cm or 60cm square template from newspaper to help you decide which board size to order.
Creating a fake set
It's so easy to create a fake scene to look like a floor/wall or table/wall combination.
For this you can use one Photo Boards® backdrop with your own surface or wall, or use two Photo Boards® together!
For a realistic table + wall appearance simply place the fake wall behind the edge of your fake flat surface to create an L shaped set. In real life a wall would not sit on top of a table, which is why you should always place the lower edge of the vertical surface behind the flat surface.
Make sure you can't see the giveaway board edges in your shots and your viewers will be fooled into thinking you are shooting on location!
Match up shadow directions for super real looking textures.
Some board designs have strong shadows such as the linen design shown below. Matching the real and fake shadows can be your secret weapon for fooling viewers into thinking you used real textures in your shots.
Matching shadows is optional and the board will look great rotated any way you choose, but if you position the board so that the shadows in the texture fall in the same direction as the shadows from your subjects, together they will create a very realistic scene!
Reduce reflections to add depth to background textures.
Any smooth surface that you use in still life photography looks better at some angles than others. You have probably discovered this yourself already when using painted wood, leather, plastic, vinyl, laminate flooring, wallpaper and other smooth finish surfaces.
The smooth wipe-clean satin finish of the Photo Boards will similarly reflect a small amount of light when used at narrow angles.
Study the shot below closely and you can see a slight reflection from the base of the left candlestick. This is because the camera is at a low angle near to the base board. However no light is reflected from the back board!
The easiest way to avoid reflections on photo boards or on any other smooth surface that you use, is to position your camera pointing directly at the background from the front or from above, or from a diagonal 45 degree angle looking down onto the board. The closer your camera is to looking across the surface of a background, the more visible reflections will appear.
We think the many benefits of using Photo Boards are worth the effort of slightly adjusting the angle of your camera or board to avoid reflections :)
Protecting your board surface
It is important not to create visible scratches in the design that could be seen in your photos.
Keeping your boards stored flat and in their protective paper sleeve will help them to avoid becoming scratched or bent.
If you do need to wipe your board clean, use a soft damp cloth and be gentle. Do not scrub or use abrasive cleaners.
I hope you enjoy using your photo boards! - LJ