While having a brick-and-mortar studio is nice, it isn't always feasible. Photographers create backdrops out of their homes, garages, or on set to disguise the location using stands with muslins, seamless paper, or even collapsible options as well. In searching for other options, I found a portable wood look to be the perfect fit.
Seamless paper and muslins work great for headshots and family photography, but for my genre of boudoir, it just did not work for me. Recently, a fellow photographer linked me to her site for a portable wood backdrop. Jessica Rae and her husband, Chad — who together form the husband-and-wife team behind Wood Be Nice out of Canada — have created a backdrop that is so versatile you can shoot just about anywhere. They are affordable and even ship to the U.S.
How They Can Be Used
The biggest challenge I found when I worked out of my home studio was disguising the look of being inside my own house. Back then, my home studio relied on moving all my personal items around in order to create a look that didn't require me to have my client stepping on Legos. Some days it worked fine, and other days I just felt overwhelmed at being a mom and trying to retain the look of my home studio without the clutter. If I had this backdrop back in those days, I may never have moved my office to brick and mortar.
In my new studio, this backdrop will be able to be used for hiding the back office areas, adding a new look behind my claw foot tub, or even to manipulate light coming from the large windows in the studio. I also came across an image by Aroha McKaig, who uses hers to create a scene surrounding her client.
Rae uses her backdrops as a room divider from the home office space when not in use. The office side can be used to hold images for her clients to see during reveals while the back side can be used to shoot against.
Another use is to create those shower scenes without needing a full shower with plumbing. These shots are some of the most requested in the studio. However, I do not have a proper facility. This option allows the photographer to remove portions of the backdrop and insert plexiglass with a spray of water, which does the trick.
Another option for these walls is something that will help those like myself who struggle with ideas for hanging images during expos and trade shows. Carting around 10 easels and finding out you do not have the space to accommodate them all can be trying when you are working a bridal event. The option to add shelves is helpful to add more displays vertically.
The panels form to 50'' wide and 80'' tall. There are no tools required for the assembly and when broken down can easily fit inside a car trunk. The wheels attached give the mobility for around a tradeshow floor or inside the studio.
What I Liked
- Equipped with wheels
- Can be broken down for transport or storage.
- Conversion for the price States side
What I Didn't Like
- Only two color options
- Only currently available in one size
All in all, the walls are a perfect fit for a studios needing different backdrops, or for that photographer who shoots on location. While currently the walls are only available in two color choices, the team has plans for expansion to add more options.