Today’s Post by Joe Farace
Shooting full-length poses in my 11×15-foot home studio or any small shooting space can be a challenge. While large muslin backgrounds can be softly shaped to fit the space available, seamless paper backdrops firmly resist such treatment. While a 53-inch paper background fits the space in my home studio, the 107-inch versions won’t. I can shoot on the narrow background but the images have to be rescued later in the digital darkroom. Here’s how I did it:
Step 1: I photographed Joy standing in front of a 53-inch roll of Savage Fashion Gray seamless paper using three Paul C Buff monolights. Because of her full-length pose and th 53-inch seamless paper, I was unable to capture a full background in the same frame as the model.
Step 2: I used Photoshop’s rectangular Selection tool to select an area between the left edge of the seamless paper and Joy’s elbow. Using Photoshop’s Content Aware Scaling feature (Edit > Content-Aware Scale) I dragged one of the selection handles until the original frame was filled with gray background. I clicked Enter which finished part of the background. Tip: If you have an older version of Photoshop that lacks Content Aware Scaling, you can select and drag one of the handles and it should work for with a solid color backgrounds like this one but CS6’s Content-Aware Scale didn’t work as well as I would have liked with the brick Silverlake Photo Faux Floor.
Step 3: Next I used the rectangular Selection tool to select an area between the right edge of the seamless paper and Joy’s other elbow. Then, using the same technique as the left-hand edge of the seamless background, I used Content Aware Scaling (Edit > Content-Aware Scale) to drag one of its “handles” until the frame was filled with gray background and (more or less) the brick “floor.”
Step 4: Here’s the final image with some retouching and a few overall tweaks, such as some burning in on the floor.
Camera used was a Panasonic Lumix GH4 with Lumix G Vario 14-45mm f/3.5-5.6 lens (at 25mm) with an exposure of 1/125 sec at f/7.1 and ISO 200.
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