Paint your own photography studio portrait canvas backdrop – by Kathy Weigand

Through the last 14 years of being a professional photographer, I’ve spent thousands on canvas and muslin studio backdrops.  You use them for a season or two, and before you know it, you’re ready to change them out… that adds up!

For a long time, I’ve been wanting to paint my own canvas backdrop, and I FINALLY decided to give it a try!

The very talented local watercolor artist, Annette Bennett, contacted me recently about getting her portraits made as she needed fresh images for her website and advertising.   I was very excited to work with her, and I really admire her art… she painted a beautiful portrait of my daughter’s cat, Missy, which was a present for my daughter this last Christmas – we love it!    Annette specializes in painting animals!

Before her photo session, we talked about clothing colors, so I knew that she would be bringing a black & a turquoise blouse.

I wanted a blueish-greenish traditional (business) style background.  So, I went to the local crafts store and bought:

– 1 roll of canvas over 4ft x 20ft … $30
– black, blue, green, and white water-based craft paint … $15
– a large paint brush … $5
– natural sponge … $5
First I hung it on my background stand, and stapled all edges to my workshop’s wall, trying to keep it fairly tight…
– brush on a thin layer of water & let it sit a while
– I started with black & painted all outer edges using a large brush.
– Then I blended with blue & green working towards the middle
– For the center, I added some  white – creating a lighter ‘hotspot area’
– blend blend blend
– last I used the natural sponge dabbing on some textures
It took me only a couple hours to paint a 4′ x 4′ section, and I let it dry for 2 days.
I was actually surprised!  I thought it turned out well, and it matches  her eyes too.


Thank you Annette for letting me try this new backgound on you!

And I have plenty of room on my canvas roll to paint other backgrounds.
… what colors shall I try next?

If you’ve been thinking about painting your own canvas photography prop or background, give it a try!  You might  be surprised!


© Hill Country Images
Do not print, publish, or re-use content without written permission.

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