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Last update : 2020/09/05

build a studio background for photography

A photo studio background is relatively expensive (minimum 180 Dollards without tissue).
I suggest you create a studio background for about 60 Dollards (without tissue),
or a studio background with black cloth for less than 100 Dollards,
this is 3 times cheaper than a real background with the same characteristics.

The first thing to do is buy 2 tripods.
The tripod should be solid and adjustable height.
For 25-30 Dollards, in your local DIY store (the cheapest bricolage store)
There are tripods halogen lamp construction, they are very strong,
very stable but also height adjustable up to 1.60 meter -> 63 inches.
A real studio background tripod should reach a height of 2.40 meters minimum ->94.5 inches
so we will extend the height of the tripod with steel tubes.
On Photo01, you can see the list of items that will take us.
- Two tripods (25-30 Dollards one tripod)
- A steel tube (cold rolled round tube) of 2 meters for 6 Dollards -> 79 inches
- 2 wood screws to the bar of the portal
- 2 screw bolts to secure the tubes on the tripod (screw diameter 6mm -> 0.2 inch).
(mm is millimeters)
- Either a curtain rod (wood or steel, up to 3 meters for 10 Dollards -> 120 inches)
if you want to put your own fabric background, or a IKEA TUPPLUR roller blind
(available in white, black, gray and dimensions 200mm * 195mm max -> 79*77 inches)
which already incorporates a bar for the blind for 40 Dollards.

On Photo02, you can see my white studio background, made with a curtain rod of
wood of 2.50 meters (99 inches), the fabric is a blackout light fabric of 2.40 meters (95 inches)
wide and 5 meters (197 inches) long (bought in a fabric shop), a large part of the fabric is
behind this photo shoot because It is a portraits photo shoot.

On photo03,it's my black background, an IKEA TUPPLUR roller blind model
So my studio background are rollable (for transportation) and permitted to
change it very quickly because each background has its own bar gantry (unlike a background
studio purchased, which are sold with only one gantry bar).

On Photo04, you can see where the steel tube is screwed onto the tripod site.
The dough gray you see is special glue for metal, for fix the screw bolts on the steel tube.
I chose a screw bolts from 6mm (millimeters -> 0.2 inch) diameter and hex head of 60mm long -> 2.4 inch.
Cut the steel tube into two parts of one meter (one part for each tripod) put a lot of
special glue for metal to within of the one end of a steel tube.
Apply metal special glue on bolt (hex head side) on 3 cm (centimeters) -> 1.2 inch,
then insert the screw bolt in the steel tube on 3 cm. Complete the spaces
between the steel tube and the screw with the metal special glue. Let dry
trying to keep the screw bolt in the center of the tube.

On Photo05, we see the bolt fixed in the steel tube,
I added a washer for better stability on the tripod.

On Photo06 shows the bar gantry fitted onto the top of the steel tube.
The fixing system is very simple on both ends of curtain rods,
or on the TUPPLUR roller blind, a wood screw is screwed into the protruding from 1 cm (0.4 inch)
(use screws of 5-6 cm long with a diameter of 4 mm min, and if the fabric is heavy 5-6mm in diameter)
as shown photo07 (2.4 inch long and 0.2 inch diameter min).

To fix the bar of gantry (with a wood screw at each end) on the tube,
Made an incision in the tube of 1 cm in length with the width of the screw (minimum 4 mm -> 0.2 inch),
as on the photo08. The head of the wood screws will be inside the steel tube to prevent
that the bar of gantry can't be dislocated with the steel tube and the structure of the two tripods.
The gantry will be very stable and can not uncouple itself, unless it was necessary raising
the bar of the gantry rapidly, for disassemble or for change the fabric of the studio background.

For a price almost 3 times cheaper than a real studio background,
you have a structure adjustable in height from 1.60 to 2.50 meters (63 inches to 99 inches),
the width depend on of the curtain rod (up to 3 meters -> 118 inches) or of the roller blind,
and it will be very stable.

Copyright 2011 ThierryD -
Last update 21/03/2011
Reproduction prohibited

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