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Your favorite backdrop themes and places where you find them


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What backdrop style or themes you like the most? You build backdrops by yourself? Any tips for starters which are searching good places to take landscape pictures?

ย 

Picture: Frustrated Guardian Angel

ga-leavingfrustratedv2.jpg

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48 minutes ago, Doc Carling said:

Thank you. Found it on the market.

And market found it in the titlescreen for the old videogame Hellgate London. That's where I recognise the backgrop from. Funny (and not meant as a dig at you, Carling). As to the topic of the thread. Personally, I've moved away from backdrops. I don't have my own land/home and as such was stuck with the public ones or public rez spaces, which bring their own headaches. Nowadays, unless it's a full 3D scene, which I prefer, it will at least be a 3D foreground and then a healthy helping of chromascreening.

That said, I've always liked the more mystical and fantastical backdrops that people have made. I also enjoy a good postapocalypse (a genuine post-post apocalypse is even better). Anything that immediately piques my interest and makes me wonder what might have happened there.

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ย  ย I tend to be pretty minimalistic with backdrops, I don't want them to distract from the subject. Unless I'm doing a scenic shot, which I'll mostly do in places I find whilst exploring, or build myself, I usually go with just the sky or a prim with either a wallpaper or just a blank texture. 2D backdrops with images I never really liked much, it takes effort to get the lighting right on the subject so that it doesn't look like a separately lit subject in front of a flat image; I'd have to either get the EEP ambiant colours to match the backdrop or colour wash everything in editing to match, and get the lighting sources to match from the backdrop to the subject.

ย  ย There are plenty of places in SL that have backdrops from various creators you can use, Backdrop City is probably the biggest one around.ย 

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I sometimes use a minimalist backdrop -- generally black or textured grey -- but that's usually only for closeups and portraits. Even then, I mostly prefer to use the nicely-textured wall of a skybox or something.

Most of my shots however use fairly elaborate backdrops and props. A few of these are commercial ones, but a lot of them I assemble with commercial mesh bits and pieces and/or build myself (using prims, but with good quality textures and normal and spectral maps). So, I've built an entire Metropolis-themed dance club, a 40s private investigator's office, and a few other things from prims and mesh parts for photos.

I generally do not find flat backdrops very convincing or interesting: the lighting and shadows are often wrong for instance. An exception is for scenes outside a window that may be in the background of my pic (skylines, for instance, or forests, fields, or even a suburban street). Because I am most often photographing on a platform high in the sky, I often have to add these myself. I'll generally find a sim that offers the kind of environment I want, adjust my view angle, lighting, and angle of shot to match the pic that I'm taking it for, and then snap my own backdrop. I then apply that to a flat or curved prim placed just outside the window of the backdrop I'm using. Usually, because I've already applied the Windlight/EEP setting to the pic of the background, I don't need to adjust the lighting much, and often use "full bright" because it's already got the shading and light that I want. But those 2D backdrops are seldom front-and-centre in my pics.

Props and 3D structures in a pic make, I think, a huge difference in making the photo itself look 3D. An avatar against a flat backdrop too often ends up looking "flat" itself, in my experience. But I've also seen this done really well.

Edited by Scylla Rhiadra
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I would say the difficult part of using a flat background is creating the illusion of being part of it.ย  Dissonance in color, picture scale, and art style can make your subject look pasted on instead of creating a unified image. There are ways to use flat backgrounds however. When composing your image, try pulling the background back away from your subject/ avatar, creating a foreground to focus on. Use depth of field that blurs the background out a bit. You can create DOF in post, but I think it usually looks better when you create it in the viewer.

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I rarely use backdrops.ย  I usually look for a picturesque sim to stand around in and do snapshots there.ย  For a portrait project, I just stick a plain flat prim behind me.

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3 hours ago, Eddy Vortex said:

I rarely use backdrops.ย  I usually look for a picturesque sim to stand around in and do snapshots there.ย  For a portrait project, I just stick a plain flat prim behind me.

^^^^^^

This.ย  ย I have used backdrops, but I haven't in forever.ย  I prefer roaming the sims

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Honestly varies as sometimes I explore a sim for a photo, other times I sent up a backdrop and try make it look less backdrop.ย  So, tell me if you can tell which is the backdrop and which is where I went to a sim and I will confirm which is which in another post.

long way from home_001.png

dog vs neko_003.png

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At a quick guess: my vote goes to both examples being backdrops. The topmost picture seems to have two types of shadow, one in the background and another near the avatar. The bottom one seems to switch light direction at some point.

But I'm without my glasses today and will happily accept I'm wrong. Cool pictures either way.

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Okay... now for results on pictures.

Top: backdrop

Bottom: a sim (yes I do have the SURL if anyone wants me to share it); I had DoF in world on.

Proves, you can never really always tell with a picture and Doc, my rental had palm trees round it till I asked the land owner to remove them. :)ย 

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On 4/2/2021 at 7:33 AM, MrsSeren said:

Honestly varies as sometimes I explore a sim for a photo, other times I sent up a backdrop and try make it look less backdrop.ย  So, tell me if you can tell which is the backdrop and which is where I went to a sim and I will confirm which is which in another post.

long way from home_001.png

dog vs neko_003.png

Bottom is a backdrop.ย  ย  ย I think

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On 4/3/2021 at 1:09 PM, MrsSeren said:

Okay... now for results on pictures.

Top: backdrop

I am late but this is what i would have said, that line across the middle of the road was my clue.

Edited by Talligurl
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Just to clarify. This?

background picture = an image that serves as a visual background

back drop = a self built setting or scenery and/or an inworld locatation

Actually many definitions on web list all under the name backdrop. Background pictures as well.

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7 hours ago, Doc Carling said:

Just to clarify. This?

ย  ย Backdrop just means backdrop - i.e. anything you put in the frame behind your subject, whether it's a two-dimensionalย image or a three-dimensional prop.

ย  ย Examples of two-dimensional backdrops include things like plain walls with or without textures (bricks, wallpapers, etc), abstract patterns (like those cloud screens used in school photography), greenscreens for chromakey applications, and images representing landscapes and/or structures.

ย  ย Background picture however refers specifically to a picture that you put in the background.

ย  ย In Second Life, the term 'backdrop' tends to refer to a three-dimensional prop made specifically for photography, but the term remains applicable for any background used in a picture.ย 

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