The dummy guide to finding the perfect background for your photograph

Being a portrait photographer, I am terribly spoiled when it comes to backgrounds! Given how close you are to your subject and how little of it you photograph, you can use almost anything to shoot against. Fashion, especially on location and street fashion, is an entirely different story, however.

On a recent shoot in Vienna’s gorgeous Stadtpark I quickly realised that what I had planned was not gonna work. Karin, the model, was perfect, yet the images left much to be desired:

Streetstyle in Vienna’s Wienfluss edited to look like Kodak 100VS film

Moving around, we found this huge park bench – and behind it: an even bigger white wall!

A good background helps you focus.

Now I’m not saying find a clean, empty background and just shoot against it – after all, plain white is terribly boring! In fact, it doesn’t have to be clean or empty as this image by fashion blogger lionheaded and @anasbarros proves:

What you want is a background with a clear visual structure, in relation to which you can place your subject.

Don’t just shoot against something pretty like an opulent fin de siècle promenade – the prettier the backgound, the less you will be able to focus on your subject (even if you add some random props you find on location 😉 )

Adding a bottle of wine helps sell the story without distracting from the subject.

I hope this helps all of you awesome people shoot even better images! 🙂

If you’re shy like me and are wondering how to find models and people to work with via Instagram: an article about just that is already in the making! Subscribe to the blog or my facebook page so you don’t miss it!

In the meantime: here’s some more images from the shoot..

From my  Portfolio

NELAVIE Musikvideo "Ein Stück Augenblick"

Das dritte Musikvideo für die Singer-Songwriterin Nelavie – und diesmal etwas monumentaler. Das Konzept ist inspiriert von der Musik genauso wie von Plato und Walt Whitman . Kunde: NELAVIE Konzept: martin phox & NELAVIE Video Produktion: martin phox Plattform: YouTube, Facebook Jahr: 2019 NELAVIE „Ein Stück Augenblick“ Musikvideo:



Trust the stories you find in your heart. For they hold a truth deeper than what is true.

Bench / Leo

It is time to express your strength.


The model and the photographer conspire to trap their audience in strange little worlds. We call them pictures.

Die Machbarschaft

Mood Video für die Stadt Wien


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