Class Introduction


Simple Backdrops for Compositing


Lesson Info

Class Introduction

Welcome and thank you for joining me for this class. We are going to talk about how to create backdrops for your work in really, really simple, cheap ways. So the goal here is not to create a really elaborate, expensive set, but to create simple, cheap sets in a way that's really accessible for most people. So I don't know about you, but I don't tend to get to work in a giant studio like this. This is a luxury for me. And given that it's a luxury, I'm going to shoot in a way that is very true to how I would work in my house, which is where I tend to do my shoots. I work in a little corner of my office, where I have nice window light coming in, and my go to backdrop is a bed sheet, because I don't have a stand for really fancy backdrops like seamless photo paper, or anything like that. So, for me, it's all about the bed sheet. Bed sheets are great because often they're one color, so I don't have to worry about texture or different patterns, or anything like that. So I can use a bed shee...

t to transform an image. And I do that two ways. One is with set design, and the other is with compositing. Set design is pretty simple in that we bring in props and different fun elements to our shoot that we can then use to enhance the image. So whether it's a prop like a teddy bear, or a teacup, like we're going to use today, or something else, you can bring in elements to make the image a little bit more fun and playful. But the other way that I use backdrops, such as bed sheets is to composite my work. So I will very frequently use a bed sheet as a simple backdrop while I will then remove myself from the backdrop and put myself anywhere I want, like in a bedroom, or a castle, or a forest. And that's really exciting for me, because I love to photograph myself. Not because I love photographing myself, but because I love to be a character. I think that it's super fun to just be able to be anyone that you want, anywhere that you want. And that's what we're going to do today. We're actually going to jump into a shoot here where I'm going to utilize bed sheets as backgrounds. I'm going to photograph myself and I'm going to put myself in editing later on, in a totally new space. So we're going to use set design to create a little bit of a scene here. We're going to use compositing to move myself off of the background that we're currently on, which is just a bed sheet, and into a totally new scene. So, join me for a fun photo shoot and edit.

Class Description

Learn how to source, put together and polish backgrounds for your images by utilizing everyday objects, set design, and compositing. Award-winning and fine art photographer Brooke Shaden, shares her secrets to creating the magic behind her subjects. Not having a big budget or a great location should never stop someone from creating images that look expensive and refined.

You'll Learn:

  1. How to create and use bedsheets as backdrops so that your images have a painterly background.
  2. How to effectively and inexpensively use color theory and prop placement to create a set in your own home.
  3. How to shoot backgrounds for subjects you will composite in later, and top tricks for being able to create smooth composites.


fbuser c20ec902

I would recommend the class to anyone that has an interest in composing and learning how to blend and tone objects and how to place objects in background. I was looking more for creating backgrounds, but this was just as good. Some of Brooke's techniques are interesting to say the least as in a few i would use a different tool, but that is what makes this class different in that there is another way of accomplishing a result using another technique which I'm sure I use. I will watch this a few more times. It was well presented and explained. Thanks Brooke....

Max Safaryan

Great course with useful content and excellent delivery - Brooke is very informative, pragmatic and efficient. Well worth it!

a Creativelive Student

Fabulous content, easy to follow and understand and I loved her tips on shadows!