Get the most from your pop up background

Whether you are using your pop-up background for a video call with a new client or a location portrait shoot, there are some simple tips you can do to get the most out of it.    

Set up. 

The best place to start is to make sure that your background is secure. Having your background fall or slip out of position can be both frustrating and even embarrassing. There are a few ways to prevent this.    

  • Use a dedicated stand clip and stand. These are easy to use and are relatively inexpensive.  
  • Use the Velcro loops on the top and side to attach to a boom arm. If you do not have a boom arm you can use anything that fits through the loops i.e., curtain pole  
  • Try to avoid resting it unsecured against a wall or door, these backgrounds are really light so can easily be blown or knocked over  

Positioning 

You never want to sit 2” away from your popup background for a number of reasons. 

  • You can cast a shadow which is rarely what you’re after. 
  • The background can almost become part of the foreground.  
  • No matter what camera you are using either a DLSR or a laptop web cam it will have some sort of auto focus. You want this on your subject and not the background. 

If you can position your subject about 1-2 feet in front of the background this will allow 

  • Shadows to drop out of shot (depending on the lighting) 
  • A clear separation between foreground and background  
  • Auto focus will allow the background to drop out of focus, this will add depth to the image as well as getting rid of any small creases.  

Colours and Patterns 

Pop up backgrounds come in assorted colours and patterns. In most cases, the pattern or colour has been chosen out of personal preference. However, sometimes the colour or pattern has a purpose. 

  • Picture backgrounds i.e., wooden panels, brickwork etc. These are designed to give the effect of a real surface. These work best when out of focus, so you may find that this image is not super sharp, and this is why.  
  • Pure white/black backgrounds. These are great for all sorts of image creation but to get your desired effect you may need to change you lighting. For example, putting up a white background in a poorly lit room will unfortunately not give you a white background on your photos/videos, so you will need to light it properly. Also, if you use a pure black background and there is too much light it can turn grey! For more info on lighting please see our range of lighting guides in the links below.  
  • Chroma green/blue: Other than just being very green and very blue this two-sided type of background is designed so you can digitally manipulate the background easier. This is not as complicated as it sounds and is a useful tool to have.

Lighting 

There are a lot of ways to light you the subject when using a pop-up background. We have some simple guides that will hopefully get you up and running.  

Looking to create professional-looking portraits? Have a look at this simple setup guide we made called How to: Take School Photography Portraits.

Basic video lighting is also quite easy to get right and makes all the difference. Check out our tips and tricks guide here. 
Simple Video Lighting Tips & Tricks.

If you are planning to use the pop-up background for video calls, online client meetings or even a job interview, then lighting and camera setup are really important. Have a look at our guide How to Make Video Conferencing from Home Work for you.

Folding down 

This can be a bit tricky to get right but once you have it, it is like riding a bike and you will be able to put your pop-up background away as quickly as you set it up! 

Click here to download PDF instructions.  

Hopefully, this has answered some of your questions around our pop up backgrounds, how to get the most out of them and which one is right for you.  

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