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Photo Studio and Photo Equipment Terms - B

Photo Studio and Photo Equipment Terms - B


A background is part of the overall scene. Is is placed behind the main subject. Is it found in a variety of colors and patterns as well as materials (cloth background, paper background, motif background, vinyl background)


A type of photography background which is foldable. It can be double-sided with different colors on each side, transparent, or unicolor

Background Paper

Photography background made of paper available in a variety of colors.

Background Vinyl

Photography background made of vinyl material. It can be found in several colors (usually uni-color). Vinyl backgrounds are usually more durable than the other types of background as it doesn't tear like paper background and does not have wrinkles like cloth backgrounds

Background System

System used to hold a background. There are many types of background systems ie auto-pôle, telescopic background support made of 2 tripods and 1 lateral bar, wall-mounted background system, etc

Background Carton

Photography background made of paper available in a variety of colors.

Background motif

Photography background with patterns, usually hand dyed. These backgrounds are usually themed and used for specific type of photography to accompany the theme of the photographer

Background System Portable

System used to hold a background. Portable solution, it is usually made of 2 tripods and 1 lateral bar. The lateral bar can be telescopic or be composed of several parts that will be fitted together

Background System Wall mounted

System used to hold a background. Usually made with hooks to hold a paper background or vinyl background

Barn door

A barn door is a light modifier accessory of a studio flash. The attachment has the appearance of a large set of barn doors, but in fact there are four leaves, two larger and widening on the outside, two smaller and getting narrower towards the outside. They facilitate shaping of the beam of light from the fixture, and prevent the distinctive scatter of light from spilling into areas where it is not wanted, such as the eyes of audience members. (Source: (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stage_lighting_accessories#Barn_doors)


Light modifier for studio flashes or continuous daylights. It is usually available in several colors (white, translucent, gold, silver) each color providing a different effect

Background cloth

Photography background made of cloth available in a variety of colors. The material usually used are muslin and cotton

Battery grip

A battery pack is an accessory for an SLR/DSLR which allows the camera to hold multiple batteries to extend the battery life of the camera, and adds a vertical grip with an extra shutter release. Source: (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battery_grip)


Studio flash brand. A number of other brands design their flashes with a Bowens Bayonet which makes it compatible with Bowens accessoires


Connector for Studio flash which allows to use light modifiers (softboxe, snoot, barn door, standard reflector, fresnel, optical snoot) with the flash

Beauty Dish

A beauty dish is a light modifier used for beauty photography or fashion photography. It creates a round effect in the eyes of the model. Adapters makes it compatible with a number of studio flash brands

Backgound light

The background light will provide separation between the subject and the background. Many lighting setups follow Three-point lighting or 4-point lighting setup. 4 Point lighting is the same as 3 Point Lighting with the added addition of a background light. In a 4 Point Lighting, the background light is placed last and is usually placed directly behind the subject and pointed at the background. By adding a background light to a set, filmmakers can add a sense of depth to shots.

Background reflector

Light modifier used to illuminate a background.


Brand of flash. A number of Sofboxes and accessoires are compatibles with this brand through an adapter.

Boom stand

Light stand used as an accessory to a light to illuminate a suject from above.


Backlighting refers to the process of illuminating the subject from the back. In other words, the lighting instrument and the viewer are facing towards each other, with the subject in between. This causes the edges of the subject to glow, while the other areas remain darker. The backlight can be a natural or artificial source of light. When artificial, the back light is usually placed directly behind the subject in a 4-point lighting setup. The back light is sometimes called hair or shoulder light



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