The foreground of a picture has to be black, so we have to make a picture so that it is black. Now this is all going to be a bit difficult, but we will figure it out in due time. The best way to make your screen black is to be as obtuse as possible. Think of every black spot on the screen, it’s there just to make it black. This isn’t a hard and fast rule, but it works great. Try to avoid using bright spot colours – you will use more dark spots. Try to avoid using the same black image in all of the pictures I will show you. Also don’t have any dark squares in your picture. If you do, then your black squares are not working, but those are fine to use (see below).
To make your background black we need to draw some colour into it. The trick is to choose colours that contrast well with the light. It usually helps to use the same colour in the foreground and the background for each line – the best colour to use for the background will always be the one you use in the foreground. This means that when you are planning the background, you can just think of something that will contrast well with the foreground and the dark squares, and use that.
So we have a black background with a grey foreground (it’s hard to notice them now, does it look like a shadow?) and a white grey square on the right. We use the same colour for each of them, and the dark squares don’t really count as colour. I usually just use black, but if I see something that catches my eye I use a lighter colour to make it stand out more.
To get a decent shot of the square we make a little mask between the lines, so that it looks like a single pixel, but actually has three. The bottom one is the one that is being used for the middle of the square. Since we are only showing three lines, it only works for three pixels. That way we won’t get any white squares or lines.
I like these masks because they don’t interfere with the look of the picture. I will not use them for every picture I make, since every picture is different. But it is good for a few, just to help me see better.
I hope you like the pictures I show you in this series, and if we are still alive after reading this you are free to look at my other blog posts – about lighting and video.
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