How to Turn Any Background Black

Black backgrounds work great when you want to create high contrast and moody images. They work great for almost any type of portrait photography. And the good thing is that you can create a black background with almost any type of background that you have. You just need to be careful with where and how you place your lights. In this video, photographer Mark Wallace from Adorama talks about how you can create a black background from a white wall. You can apply the same principle to any wall with any color and get the exact result:

If you take a regular approach and place the lighting in front of the model, some lighting will naturally fall on the background. This will result in the background being visible and not appearing black. So, how do you go about making the background disappear?

“The answer is simple; we just need to not illuminate it.”

To go about it, first start by turning your flash off and then adjust your camera settings in a way that you get a black frame. This ensures that all the ambient lighting is cut out, and that the final image will only be affected by the light that you add in. Next, position the model and the lighting in a way that no light strikes the wall while the model is still illuminated. Using a grid on the softbox is a good way to prevent any light spill.

This is quite a convenient and an economical way to create a black background for your image. Give it a try, and you’ll realize how easy this is.

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