I have been impressed with the backgrounds used today in Breakthrough, McKenzie & so on. I have some experience in photography and wondered if all of these quality shots are done in a studio or if anyone could shed some light with their success of these pictures in their shop and what it takes to produce these. I prefer the backgrounds that are black on the edges and fade to blues in the center. I am assuming that a dk. blue backdrop is used with lighting behind it?, or is it actually a colored light hitting the backdrop from the front? Please help if you can, thanks.
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First I am not a expert photographer but I know a little about photographing taxidermy mounts.
I recommend you check out the article in Breakthrough issue 46 by John Bellucci.I have quite a few mounts photographed in a professional studio.But I have alot of equipment of my own that I use for small to medium pieces. I leave the large pieces up to the studio.
You can purchase a backdrop (dark color), and a slave, this is what gives you the colors behind the mounts .On the slave you place a colored gel lens of your choice to make the colors.It fires at the same time as your flash.
You can e-mail me direct and I will turn you on to a supplier that you can purchase these items from.
The photos you see in Breakthrough and from shows are often done by either Larry Blomquist of Breakthrough, or Ken Edwards of this site. Contacting either guy will answer alot of your questions.
If you're interested in a video seminar, there is a new VHS tape now available from Breakthrough and WASCO. Terry Farmer, the professional photographer at the 1999 World Taxidermy Championships gave a seminar on photography of mounts which covered backdrops, studio lighting techniques, cameras and film selection. The live seminar was videotaped and is now availble. The code number is VHS192, the price is $19.95 and the seminar lasts for about 90 minutes.
Thanks for all of your input. I will look into this more.