In this tutorial, I will show you a quick and easy way to create a backdrop for your personal studio that won't empty your pockets. We bought all of our materials at Lowes and painted at our studio. First, we got the insulation boards that you would see being used on houses. It's light weight but thick enough to stand up without breaking. Secondly, we looked at some paint swatches and picked out the colors we thought would work well together for the backdrop. In this case we used black, white, purple, red, orange, and blue. You can get the sample sizes of paint for around $5 each and they even have sample sized paint on sale for about 50 cents each. Lastly, be sure to pick up a decent brush that's medium to large in size as you are painting a large area.

 

Here are the steps I took:

Step One

Step One

The very first thing I do is make sure I have everything I need in one place so I don't have to go looking for anything with paint on my hands. Once, I have everything I need I start with the base coat. With this type of canvas you can see writing and lines that I don't want to show through so I start by painting the whole board white. In the image to the right you only see one board, however, if you want a nice, large, backdrop I suggest using 2 of these boards and placing them side by side.

Step Two

Step Two

Next, I paint random squares and rectangles with different colors. I do this partially to add another layer of paint to cover the text on the baord and to create a guide of where I want certain colors to go. You can use any colors and layout your squares and rectangles anyway you would like.

Step Three

Step Three

Once you've finished the first layer or color start working on each square again but this time create more detail. To do this use a little bit of a darker color and a little bit of a lighter color to make shadows and highlights in each square. You don't want to make them all the same so there is variety.

Step Four

Step Four

This is what my detailed squares look like. You can choose to only use black and white with each colored square or you can use other colors like I did. For instance I used the red on the purple square for the lighter areas and black for the darker areas. On the orange square I used red, white and black for accent colors.

Detail Shot #1

Detail Shot #1

Here is a detailed shot of the individual squares on my backdrop. Once I have completed all the squares in this detail I start working on the outline.

Detail Shot #2

Detail Shot #2

In this detailed shot you can see that I have added a black outline around all of the squares and rectangles. You can see that just adding this stroke makes a huge difference in how the backdrop looks.

Viola!

Viola!

There you have it! Our final is backdrop completed! Be sure to keep in mind that you need to match up the boards so they can be placed together and look like one large board. Once you have used your new backdrop for a session be sure to clean up any spots or dents from moving your boards around in Photoshop.

 

Which one is your favorite?