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Sometimes the stage is not big enough for a performer. Similarly, sometimes the background is simply not big enough for a photographer! That is exactly why it is so important to know how the final image will look before you start!
For a dance portfolio session with Cassie, I knew we wanted to capture her in motion; however, we needed to do so within a confined space. I included the original image below from a dance portfolio photo session. It is shown completely “as shot” and has not been cropped at all. We did not have access to a large dance stage for the session and needed to make it work with a standard paper background roll. This did not pose a problem for us because I knew exactly what I wanted the final images to look like. In this case, as long as the dancer was caught mid-air entirely in front of the paper, I knew I could easily extend the paper edges in Photoshop.
In the second image below, you can see the processed image overlaid on the original image. I essentially removed all traces of the paper roll backdrop in Photoshop along three of the image edges – the top, bottom and left edges.
In the third image, I cropped everything down to the final proportions (shown in the second image) and slightly rotated it to straighten it out. Unless you were there for the photo shoot (or I showed you the “before” image), you would know it was shot with such limited space! What do you think of the final result? Please be sure to leave a comment below to share your thoughts and ideas on when to remove the background in Photoshop!