A Photography Board Review: Replica Surfaces Backdrops / Are They Worth The Money?


I am not a professional photographer. To make my products shine I have tried everything from light boxes to homemade fabric boards. Nothing seemed to work for producing high quality, professional looking photos of my Etsy items.

Republic Surfaces has created sturdy light weight photography background boards. I decided to try them and see if they were worth the extra expense.

Read on to see what happen…..

What Is This Product?

Replica Surfaces are fairly new to the market. Founded in late 2018 founder Mandy Gleason was in search of a product board for product photography. Not satisfied with what was on the market she decided to make her own. You go girl!

She created a 23″ by 23″ square photography background boards. These photography boards come in various styles. One of the most popular styles is the marble look. Unlike real marble these boards weigh less than 2 pounds each. You can keep them upright with the companies custom-fit stands. Try that with real marble! A fellow Etsy seller had highly recommended them so I decided to give it a try.

The background in your product photography is very important. A photos background is normally considered secondary to the subject. However, you must be aware that the design and use of a background can be critical to a photo’s overall success. When I had heard about this product I felt it was an important part of the product photography process so why not give it a try.

Which Backdrop Did I Try?

I decided to order the marble pattern which their website tiled “White Marble“. I sell antiques so I was thinking this a great neutral tone with subtle highlights of color. Here is how it appears on their website.

My First Use With The Product

My boards arrived in 4 days. I live in New Hampshire and it was shipped from Texas so to me that’s pretty quick. The two boards were very well packed in bubble wrap and foam sheets. Tucked away inside the package I found the stands.

My first impression: WOW! Light weight durable boards that truly look like marble. I could not get my product and phone fast enough to take a photograph. I was a bit nervous about setting them up. How long will it take to assemble this portable new photo studio I just purchased?

The kit came with an instruction card that showed me clearly how to snap the boards all together.

I set the timer, because that’s the kind of geek I am, to see how long it would take to put these boards together. 2 min and 15 seconds flat! Bam! At this point I was excited to start my photoshoot. I placed my first item on the board.

The Results

As I took my photos the first thing that hit me was I now had room to move. My last photoshoot the week before was a success however, I had used a large black lightbox. I found it much easier to get the angles I needed for my product photos with my new boards. The easier I was able to get around my subject the more creative I felt in taking my photographs.

Let’s get on with it! Here are the first few photographs I took with this product. I could not get these items into my Esty shop fast enough.

As you are viewing these photos keep in mind I am in no way a skilled photographer. Just a girl with an Etsy shop. These photos were taken with my Samsung 10s phone.

Product Photography for my Etsy Shop

After posting 5 new product photos on Etsy with my new backdrops 3 of the 5 items sold in the first two days. For my Esty shop that’s fast. I can usually count on 2 to 3 sales in a week or two but not right after posting them. My vintage items usually sit in my shop for a good two weeks before sold not 2 days. I think I am going to like these boards!

Support From The Company

Asking For Some product information

I did contact the company directly with a few questions. I wanted to order a second board that matched well with what I had ordered. Republic Surfaces replied quickly. I heard right back with an answer. I had a few additional questions a day later and again right away a quick answer and they could not do enough for me.

Seeking Some Photography Advise

Being new to product photography I needed a bit of guidance with balancing light with my photos as well as styling my shots with props. I found some great how-to blog articles right on the company website. Imagine that!

An Other Bonus Use

I found that by simply purchasing some props with my branding colors I could create custom backgrounds for my instagram posts using these boards. Playing with overhead photography and bringing in my logo as well made for some great Instagram photos. I’ll keep these quotes going while keeping my branding consistent and professional.

In Conclusion

Are these photography background boards worth the money?

That is a king size yes! The return on investment on these boards are fantastic. I will have these boards for years to come. They are a quality, well thought out product. My Republic Surfaces Boards have become the most important tool in my photo arsenal. I love that they help with a constant brand feel of my shop and they just make my photos look professional and amazing. A breeze to work with these boards are fantastic. Well done Mandy Gleason.

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