How To Create Seamless Backdrops in Photoshop

There are times where you just don't have enough space, time, or material to cover your entire scene with an infinite backdrop. One workaround that you can do is to use as much as you have, and then extend it across the rest of the image in Photoshop.

When you're shooting, there's a high chance that at some point, you're not going to be able to get the image right in camera. This can happen at all levels, in all genres, and it isn't necessarily indicative of a lack of preparation. I've had several magazine shoots where my only option — due to the subject's busy schedule — is to photograph them at a location they need to be. That means having to work around cramped spaces, cluttered rooms, and less than ideal lighting. Handling that is tricky, but there are methods that can ensure you come away with strong images. One of these is to bring a rolling backdrop and stand.

Using a backdrop can hide the location well, and it can make for studio standard images if you know how to light them. However, there are some things it can't do. One prime example is it cannot cover everything. Typically, I don't want an infinity backdrop where the subject doesn't look to be standing on a different surface from the wall. What I do want, however, is to extend my backdrop to hide stands and features of the room I'm in. I typically do this in Photoshop with the ways used in this video, and so for me, it's an important skill to have.

Robert K Baggs's picture

Robert K Baggs is a professional portrait and commercial photographer, educator, and consultant from England. Robert has a First-Class degree in Philosophy and a Master's by Research. In 2015 Robert's work on plagiarism in photography was published as part of several universities' photography degree syllabuses.

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