Photographing Black

To record black on film or video here are a few different things to do.

Black paint and Duvateen often don't work.

Black velvet is the blackest cloth and will often record black in the same light if the rest of the scene is not all darker shades of gray. (Read incident light.)

You can reflect unlit black areas into a shiny object, such as Marlite, black Plexiglas, and shiny black paint.

You can also reduce the light on the already black area or object to get it below the threshold of exposure. Or increase the light on the desired objects.

You can put mattes at the camera and block large areas with flags. The matte will be sharper the further they are from the camera. If you edge the desired areas with black velvet, then you can do the rest of the area with flags.

Hiding rig wires is a trick. The super fine wire available now helps. Painting wire adds diameter and sometimes works.

Night and dark areas of a stage might be considered as a background.

Objects in sunlight with a Duvateen background in the shade will work.

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