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A Guide to the Best Food Photography Backdrops

When words fail, photography speaks its story itself. 

Ok, we all know that it isn’t the saying, but it is true…, especially for photography.

Imagine mouthwatering, stomachic, and appealing burger pictures on social media. Isn’t the view inviting you to take a bite or place an order now?

Yes, from styling to creating a scene, food photography backdrops, props, lighting, and other elements play a vital role. 

Considering these factors, we designed this article based on backdrops for now so that you can discover what makes the best backdrops, materials, where you can buy them, and many more.

Without any delay, let’s dive in!

What is a Backdrop in Food Photography?

A photography backdrop or surface is a background used to set the stage and enhance the decoration with the perfect visual impact. 

It’s nothing but like a painted canvas, with solid colors with fine-tuned designs or quality clothes hung on the wall. 

Use them for indoor or outdoor photography, from product photographers to food photographers depending on the theme and color scheme.  

In short, 

  • Backdrops are the foundation of your food photography composition. 
  • It is an essential tool for bloggers, photographers, and shop owners to highlight their food’s unique story to everyone. 

Want to add some spice to your bite shot to increase website traffic and social engagement? 

Before clicking, let’s find the best one that gives a WOW reaction at first glance!

What Makes a Good Food Photography Backdrop? 

Do you want to create a great shot to scale your business or satisfy your photography clients

From styling beauty or brownies to making delicious looks, backdrops are the best choice for food photographers, product photography, and food stylist.

Let’s look at food photography backdrop characteristics below that help you to find your perfect fit. 

Texture

The first considerable factor is texture because it comes with elements like wood grain, rustic tiles, or speckles, creating a beautiful view in your photos. 

Do you want to add more depth, aesthetic feel, and interest to your composition? Try some texture backdrop to give an attractive look to your viewers. 

Note: Avoid buying over-textured backdrops.

Contrast

To elaborate the dish’s story, contrast work as the form of texture. For example, a rough vintage table, peeling paint, or a stained baking tray can add extra beauty.

However, you can also choose a tile pattern and streaks in a marble surface of white against grey paint and others. 

Note: Too many patterns can be overwhelming and distract the attention from the main subject.

Color

Instagram feeds are full of alive and fresh looks food photos. Did you ever notice the background and backdrop color combination?

All the colors are fantastic, neutral, and desaturated. Also, it matches perfectly with the food story and gives food photography the voice to speak up!

Pro Tip: Try vibrant colors to give a more punchy and contemporary vibe. Brightly colored food like fresh herbs, peppers, or veggies can fit with greys, white, or blacks.

Material

In the marketplace, you will find different food photography backdrops with various materials. But a durable, waterproof, and cleanable one help you to avoid stains, splashes, and spills. 

Below we listed some common materials for food photography backdrops.

  • Paper or cardboard – offers photo-realistic textures feature and is cost-effective. But its thin surface is easily affected by water and wrinkling.
  • PVC – Offers a rigid material that is the best fit for printing.
  • Laminate – Lightweight, durable layer, waterproof, and made with cardboard.

Size

From food bloggers or content creators to DIY backdrops for food photography, the perfect size is 2ft x 3ft. Also, the size depends on the best view from different camera angles (i.e., level up or above).

But do not purchase backdrops smaller than 2ft x 4ft when you shoot landscape orientation.

Most commercially available food backdrops come in different sizes, so you can pick one to create your creative art. 

Non-Reflective and Glare

Are you a newbie in the food photography genre? A matte and non-reflective surface can add extra value rather than the former. 

Also, you can focus on creating your composition, lighting, and camera settings without struggling with reflections. 

Pro Tip: Watch reviews on YouTube to inspect the surface yourself and use a solid and non-reflective background.

Portable 

This trait depends on the type of images you want to photograph. But to use it repeatedly, you can choose a more portable and storable backdrop. 

Also, you can carry those anywhere and anytime for your food photography session.

Best Food Photography Backdrops for Photographers 

It’s time to reflect your imagery in your photographs. 

But facing a dilemma: where can you purchase and get your food photography’s suitable match backdrops?

Look no forth! To solve these issues, we enlisted the top companies where you get versatility, different sizes, and color options that match most of the backgrounds.

So, you don’t need to stick to the darker tones. Let’s pop your dish using wooden backdrops and plenty of texture.

What colors make your food more flavorful? Or maybe you’re just not sure which element to include in your setup. Using color theory in your food photography determines whether your dish will pop or flop.

Seamless Background Paper

seamless background paper

Don’t like dark textures backdrops for food photography? Then you can go with seamless backgrounds paper instead. 

Selens and Evanto seamless paper are both made of cardboard and rollable, which is the best fit for creating airy food photos. 

Everyone prefers paper backdrops, from amateur or freelance photographers to professional photographers, for their reasonable pricing and recyclability.

ProsCons
Light-hued patterns highlight the delicious and tempting food view.Thick & durable 
Realistic and lighter textures evoke viewers to take a bite instantly.Easily tear, dirt, & crease.
Easily fit in a large dish or a medium spread.Heavyweight
Prevent reflection and eliminate the need to over or underexpose the backdrop.Not easy to carry for the on-location photo session
Offer 50 different colors and shades.

Note: Keep seamless paper backdrops in a dry place to avoid moisture.

Vinyl Backdrops

Vinyl backdrops for food photography offer a versatile collection of textures like tiles, marble, concrete, steel, etc. If you tend to wood-based ones, vinyl isn’t the best fit for you. 

However, you can use the backdrops as a wall and create stunning flat-lay photography. Also, the backdrops offer different photo surfaces with various colors and structures. 

ProsCons
Perfect for messy food styling and product photography.Very heavy.
Easy to cleanThe printing resolution is not that high (not for close-up or macro shots).
Prevent reflecting light & reflections (if you shoot in natural light).The “matte” surfaces aren’t 100% matte.
Offer professional-level results.The backdrops will get horizontal bumps when you store them rolled up.
Stainproof 
It can use for both backdrop and floor drop.

Note: Avoid using chemicals on them because it can strip the surface image off.

Foam Board 

foam board  food photography backdrops

Did you know the professional photographer’s secret that amateurs can also afford?

Foam boards are the most popular and industry standards background. But you can customize it by adding colors and creating patterns.

However, they’re also very reflective and create a nice backlight effect in a scene. 

ProsCons
Simple and Budget-friendly.Get dirty quickly and not sturdy.
It gives fine, finished, and quality images.Suitable for smaller product scale.
LightweightNot recyclable.
Easily transportableChange color under much moisture or sunlight.
Used as a reflector
It can be mounted using removable adhesives.

Note: Don’t display foam boards in damp places like the kitchen.

Collapsible Backdrops 

The collapsible are very useful and elegant backdrops in a wide array of colors that suits any condition or mood. Apart from food photography, they are also used for professional headshots.  

However, with these backdrops, you get a diverse range of materials. You can buy them from any online store or on Amazon. 

ProsCons
Compact, portable, durable, & foldableLittle bit pricy 
Work as a flag or reflectorNot water-resistant
Hassle-free background optionsDamageable 
Easy to clean and maintain
Offer two backdrops in one.

Velvet Backdrops 

black velvet food photography backdrop

Wish to give your audience or photography client an aesthetic view? Or, want to evoke your viewers to eat with their eyes?

Velvet photography backdrops for food are the best choice because they offer a lovely base that suits most luxury products and comes in many colors. 

It is a woven fabric that gives a soft, purest, and semi-reflective feel.

ProsCons
Non-reflectiveNo machine wash or iron
VersatilityNot for every day or any situation used material
Light absorbingColored velvet is not as popular as satin, paper, or vinyl.
Semi-heavy 
Affordable price for only synthetic velvet-like material
Textured

Canvas Backdrops

A canvas backdrop is the best choice if you’re searching for a painterly look backdrop without busy patterns and heavy textures.

The backdrop is made with a piece of canvas fabric with artists’ paints or screen printing techniques to give an artistic feel.

For this reason, they are considered one of the best 

DIY food photography backdrops and perfect for portraiture.

ProsCons
Variety of colors and designsHeavy
Easy to storeExpensive
Washable Not water-resistant
Open up creative opportunities
Light-absorbing
Study backdrops compared to paper or vinyl.

Pro Tip: You can promote your business by creating a tangible backdrop for your photography portfolio.

Ikea Linnmon Table Top 

The Ikea Linnmon table top is perfect for minimalist matte white or colorful food photography background. 

For this reason, they are ideal for recipes and deal perfectly with messy food photographs. 

Apart from their size (3 x 2ft), they work well both in small and home studio spaces. Also, you can combine it with every thinkable food or dish.

ProsCons
Lightweight compared to most food photography boards.A little bit pricy
Sturdy and good finishRequire more space to store
Easy setup 
Handy to use and clean up

Note: The Ikea Linnmon is a muted white and requires brightness/whiteness post-processing to achieve the authentic look.

Ceramic and porcelain floor tiles 

Ceramic and porcelain floor tiles offer different finishes like – marble, stone, and textures. Also, it often comes in matte finishes.

You can buy them from any home improvement store. Both tiles are made from a clay mixture. 

Are you selling a product, enticing customers into a restaurant, or convincing them to try a recipe? These two tiles can serve as excellent food photography backgrounds in a pinch.

ProsCons
Offered in a wide range of stylesHeavyweight
Easy to cleanEasily breakable
Stain resistantNot ideal for storing or moving around
Water-resistanceNot easy to install
More expensive

Kitchen linens and cloths 

The easiest maneuver for food photography is Kitchen linens and cloths. Commercial photographers tend to have a range of kitchen linens and fabrics for adding compositions, color, and depth.

However, you can buy kitchen linens and clothes from any kitchenware store.

ProsCons
Cost-effectiveVery fragile
Easy to useEasily stains & tear
Available in different shapes, colors, and sizes
High-quality material
It does not fade or shrink

Natural parchment paper 

Want to make your main meal look even more appetizing? Try natural parchment paper. These papers are perfect for baking goods. 

Also, you can mix white or brown paper to make the view more realistic. For this reason, parchment papers are considered an excellent background for tabletop photography.

Also, you can add a feel of authenticity to your masterpiece with parchment paper.

ProsCons
Non-stick surfaceStainable
Moisture resistantMore expensive.
Easy to clean
Heat resistant

Where to Buy Food Photography Backdrops 

Food photography tells a story where backdrops share a narrative.

From the best lens for food photography or the best camera to props and lightning, everything triggers emotions and evokes viewers to think instantly (or, better to say) YUM.

Want to make your viewers hungry, push them to cook, or encourage them to place an order? 

Let’s take you to the famous and renowned place for the best food photography backdrops.

Foodboardshop

Foodboard shop backdrops

Are you searching for high-quality material and trendy design backdrops for food photography? 

Foodboardshop is one of the best companies in the Netherlands that serves food photography or product photography backgrounds and surfaces. You can use them in blogs, social media, or websites.

Also, the backdrops have a waterproof matte coating, so you can easily remove them for multiple uses. And all of them are developed by food photographers.

Features

  • Dirt & stain repellent, water-resistant, sturdy material, and easy to clean.
  • Offer multiple sizes backdrops.
  • Trendy styles & colors with stone, concrete wood, plaster, and industrial designs.
  • Lightweight & easy to store, clean, and transport.
  • Ship worldwide but offer free shipping service within the Netherlands from €69.
  • Fast delivery between 1 and 3 working days.

Note: They accept no liability for damage.

B&H

B&H food photography backdrops

B&H is an authorized American photo and video equipment retailer company based in Manhattan, New York City. 

You get versatile photography backgrounds and backdrops, including collapsible, seamless paper, chroma key backgrounds, muslin & fabric backgrounds, vinyl & PVC backgrounds, metallic, floors/floor drops, etc.

Features

  • Offer numerous designs and accessories that suit family portraits, headshots, and product photography.
  • Serve non-reflective muslin and video backdrops.
  • Fast & efficient cleanup.
  • High-quality collapsible backgrounds.
  • Reversible design, different colors, and patterns.
  • Offer a variety of stands and support kits.

Savage Universal

Savage

Are you a creative photographer searching for the most trendy or unique backdrops to give an aesthetic feel to your photographs?

With Savage Universal, you can fulfill your demands because they have a variety of smooth, seamless paper, painted canvas, collapsible backgrounds, green screens, muslin backdrops, and many others.

Savage Universal is an authorized and reputed USA imagining industry that helps visual artists and designers craft their images consistently.

Feature

  • Offer cost-effective backdrops.
  • Offer a variety of colors, sizes, and timeless textures.
  • Easy to set up and provide a flexible solution for a space.
  • Heavy-duty, durable, and professional backdrops.
  • Wrinkle-resistant backdrops

Walmart

Walmart

“Save Money. Live Better” – Walmart.

Walmart, an American operator of discount stores, is one of the world’s biggest retailers and most prominent corporations.

Here, you get premium quality backdrop kits with a special offer. From this giant eCommerce marketplace, you can purchase anything per your demands.

For this reason, their slogan is – “Save Money. Live Better”.

Feature

  • Offer affordable pricing. 
  • Introduce you to different brands & retailers.
  • Offer a variety of backdrops & backgrounds collections in one place.
  • Serve numerous colors, sizes, designs, and textures.

Club Backdrops

Club Backdrops

Do you want to level up your Instagram and photography? With the Club Backdrops, you can achieve your goal. 

Club Backdrops & Photography Backdrop Club are brands of Pineapple Express Limited in the UK. Their backdrops are designed for food, product, portraiture, flat lay photographers, fashion, video, and social purposes.

Here, you get two backdrops: vinyl photography and canvas studio backdrops.

Feature

  • Reusable and eye-catchy backdrops.
  • Perfect colors and original textures combo.
  • Waterproof and stainproof.
  • Offer 25% off on ordering multiple sets.
  • Professional portable backdrops. 
  • Offer two sizes: 2x3ft and 3x4ft.
  • High-resolution, durable, and flexible matte finish.
  • Easy to clean.

Etsy

Etsy food photography backdrops

You must have an idea about Etsy, the global marketplace for unique, extraordinary, and creative goods.

Here, you experience millions of buyers and a community of sellers who serve different textures, materials, and colors backdrops. 

You get in one place, from the white backdrop to different photography surfaces.

Feature

  • Offer budget-friendly backdrops.
  • Different size sets with multiple designs.
  • Offer a variety of textures and quality finishes.
  • Best fit for various food photography photoshoots.

FAQ

What is the best size for a food photography backdrop?

2ftx3ft is the best backdrop for flat lays and shooting food directly. But to shoot from the side or at an angle to capture a wider scene, you can buy 30×40″ backdrops.

However, you don’t need a big one like furniture photography, product photography, or flat-lay clothing photography.

Why does my white backdrop look GREY? 

The issue may happen if there is not enough light hitting the background and showing up as pure white. Also, it might be underexposed.

You can increase the exposure to allow the camera to record white as white to solve these issues. Or, you can use diffusion if needed.

What background color is best for food?

The food photography background depends on your storyline. Suppose you want to represent warm-toned food. Here, you can use a cool-toned background like black, white, grey, blue, or purple as a complementary color. 

Let’s examine other factors below:

  • The solid background color represents a minimalistic art of food.
  • Rustic background help to express a healthy image of vegetables and fruits. 
  • The Pastel background gives a trendy and eye-pleasing look. 
  • The wooden set offers a generic and straightforward look, etc.

Note: Avoid using bold and bright colors because it will steal the focus from your main subject.

Why is color important in food photography?

Everyone must highlight an authentic and realistic view that gives the viewer a natural feel, from food branding to the restaurant business. 

Let’s look at some essential roles of colors below:

  • Enhance your food branding.
  • Reflect on your style and mouthwatering view of the dish.
  • Add a texture that gives a more appealing look.
  • Create a mood. 
  • Excite hunger in a viewer.
  • Create visual interest and depth.

Pro Tip: Use the color wheel for food photography to avoid mixing more colors or hues.

How do you pick a backdrop for food photography?

A fresh, trendy, fashionable backdrop can give your food photography context and purpose. Let’s enlist some essential tips for choosing one below:

  • First, pay attention to your photo composition and storyline.
  • Avoid shiny materials (it may distract from the main point).
  • If you work with decorative background, avoid bold and bright colors backdrops.
  • Keep the color neutral when you don’t want to use a background.
  • If you work with warm-toned food, use cool-toned backgrounds that allow your food to pop.

Pro Tip: You can use three double-sided backdrops because it gives you six different finishes with light & airy or dark & moody photos.

Wrap Up 

“Contrast is what makes photography interesting” – Conrad Hall.

Every little detail or finishing touch is vital to engage your audience with the image and evoke them to discover the untold story. For this reason, there are no alternatives to having the best food photography backdrops. 

After all, you don’t want to showcase a super stuffed sandwich or savory pancake.

We hope that by following this article, you insist your viewers eat with their eyes by offering a realistic, authentic look and feel of food photographs.

Happy Clicking!

Amy Grace
Amy Grace

Amy Grace has been engaged in commercial photography for a long time. She has enough proficiency and skill set in photography and has nailed the task up to the mark and has helped a lot of entrepreneurs create a brand. Aside from photography, Amy has passion for travelling.

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