While backdrops are fabulous, (I own lots of them, and love them all), when I first started out, I couldn’t afford them. Know what I used? King sized bed sheets. Honest. They really work! I also used cloth shower curtains, large panels of fabric, and even large rolls of solid colored paper (like you would use on a bulletin board in school.)
The tip to using any kind of backdrop (fancy or not) is to make sure you pull the subject as far away from the back of the backdrop as possible. This will prevent shadows from forming behind their heads.
Windows also make excellent backdrops – or foregrounds, depending on how you want to use the light.
Outdoors it’s easier to be more creative with your backdrops. A football field, a baseball field, trees, gardens, rocks…. the possibilities go on and on.
My point is, think outside the box. So, you can’t afford a fancy backdrop. So what? Make your own creative backdrop using any kind of fabric. There are no limits when you use your creative juices!
Oh, and backdrops aren’t necessarily as expensive as you might think! You can find them very reasonably priced on ebay. Walmart sells Muslin material at a very reasonable price! If you’re really feeling creative, you can dye it any color you’d like!