The white background in the photographic image is the "new" look. When discussing a white background, we are talking about pure white...absolute white....#FFFFFF in HTML or Photoshop. You can see this in the left photo and below in photos 1b., 2b., and 6b.
White photographic backgrounds are a stylistic influence from Europe and facilitated by the availability of photo editing technology like Photoshop and FotoFuze. (If you haven't looked at a FotoFuze online demo, you should!)
The super white photographic background with the "fake" shadow starts with pure white photographic background during the photo shoot but is facilitated with photo editing software. It is almost impossible to get a pure white any other way. The tool, i.e. the technology, has become a style.
One advantage of the white background is that it is really easy to remove the art or craft object from the background for print. Thus the layout for postcards, books or magazines can depart from a grid format with a smaller investment of time or skill.
Another factor is that white is the default background for many social networking sites like Facebook (the largest photo sharing site on the Internet), Flickr, Etsy, and other online marketplaces. They make the photos look attractive. There is little or no demarcation between the edge of the photo and the site. White background images generally look good to great on these sites.
In contrast, white background shots do not look so good on web sites with dark backgrounds. My web site is a spectrum of greenish, grey backgrounds. I consciously did not want a white background web site. And I must admit that pure white background photos do NOT look that great on my web site. See examples of three types of backgrounds - with a graduated, light, and white photographic backgrounds on this page.
For example, the dark wood in Andy Cooperman's jewelry (left) doesn't look as attractive on a stark white background. The grain of the wood becoming a focal point demanding more attention than desired by the maker. (See photos 1b. and 2b. below.)
A major concern with white background shots is that the shadows and reflections on the background look fake. Some people who like the white background also like the artificial shadow. This "artificial" appearance is part of the new and trendy style.
White backgrounds can also make the work look like it is floating thus the necessity of the shadow to prevent the white or light area of the work from being lost or melting into the background (such as in the photo to the right and 7a. below). Notice that the white cord of the necklace gets lost in the background.
What do you think about white background shots?
Photos pertinent to this discussion are shown below.
Image 1 a. Image1 b.
The brooch in the above photos is “Sleeper Cell” © 2009 Andy Cooperman. Burl wood, sterling, gold leaf, stain. The left photo is by Doug Yaple. The right photo is by Steven Brian Samuels.
Image 2 a. Image 2 b.
The brooch in the above photos is “Potter” ©2009 Andy Cooperman. Burl wood, sterling, 18k, stain. The left photo is by Doug Yaple. The right photo is by Steven Brian Samuels.
Image 3 a. Image 3 b.
Pendant in the above photos: Black Heart ©2009 Jennifer Hall Sterling silver, silk ribbon. Both photos by Doug Yaple.
Image 5 a. Image 5 b.
Necklace in above photos by Marcia Meyers.©2009 "Homage to Sliced Green Pepper", reticulated silver, sterling and coral. Both photos by Doug Yaple.
Image 6 a. Image 6 b.
Octangonal Bracelet ©2009 by Harriete Estel Berman (left image) Photo Credit: Philip Cohen.
Oreo "Unlock the Magic" © 2009 by Harriete Estel Berman (right image) Photo Credit: Steven Brian Samuels.
Image 7 a. Image 7 b.
Orbit Black and White Identity Necklace #2 (left image) by Harriete Estel Berman
Photo Credit: Steven Brian Samuels.
Orbit Black and White Identity Necklace #1 (right image)by Harriete Estel Berman
Photo Credit: Philip Cohen.
More posts in the series are coming....
PHOTOGRAPHER CONTACT INFORMATION LISTED BELOW. Click on their names to go to their web site.
Philip Cohen, Photographer
email: phil [at]lmi.net
Steven Brian Samuels, Artist/photographer
email: steven [at] stevenbriansamuels.com
Doug Yaple Photographer
email: dyaple [at] comcast.net