A Short History of Painted Photography Studio Backdrops By Brad Owen
Photo BackgroundsPrinted on
Studio backdrops and backgrounds. All backdrops are of the finest quality at discount prices. The muslin backdrops are all 100% cotton , hand painted or dyed. The canvas backdrops are all hand painted by our artists. The computer painted backdrops are printed on three materials at three different prices. Owen's Originals has been in the business of selling backdrops to studio photographers since 1978. If you have questions about any of our backdrops, please feel free to
(Backdrop painter circa 1800s)
My name is Brad Owen. I started out as a High School Art teacher way back
in 1975. In 1978, a local portrait photographer named John Leubs
approached me and asked if I had ever painted a photography backdrop. I
had no clue of what he meant. He explained that backdrops were either
blended color or scenic images typically painted on canvas that could be
unrolled and hung in the studio behind the subject to enhance the
visible surroundings thus the name "Backdrop" or "Background"
After doing some research (in the library, remember, this was pre- Internet).
I found out painted backdrops on canvas had been a pretty standard item
in portrait studios for many years, dating back pretty much to the
advent of portrait photography. I also found that many of them were
commissioned to be done by local artists. Most were highly prized as
necessary tools of the trade and since they all were hand painted by
individual artists, many of them helped to establish the signature
"look" of well known studios as no two were ever exactly the same.
Anyway, I went to Mr. Leubes studio and looked at the two backdrops he
had been using. I told him I thought I could do one. He had some large
canvas and some space to paint in his studio basement. I began to
experiment and produced (after some trial and error) a couple of
canvas backdrops John was willing to try.