For the next couple of weeks Luke and I will be covering White Balance. We believe in getting as much in camera right as possible so that there is minimal editing in the end. Getting your white balance in camera is an important key to a great picture. Especially for portraits.
Today we will be talking about what exactly is White Balance?
White Balance is pretty much a way to measure color temperature. The way to know if you have a correct white balance in your pictures is that all the colors remain true to themselves. Our eyes can see the color balance really well. We know that white is white and orange is orange. However, digital cameras do not see what our eyes see when it comes to colors. Digital Cameras tend to cast a blue, orange, and sometimes green cast on the photo depending on the light.
Most cameras come with different settings for white balance. There is Auto White balance, custom, kelvin, tungsten, fluorescent, daylight, flash, cloudy, and shade. These are great settings and something you can play with to learn your camera. But there is nothing more precise than your own custom white balance. We will go more into detail on how to achieve this next week.
So play around with your different white balance settings. See how you get different color casts under different lights.
Here is an example of something I shot this morning. I used auto white balance for the first image and then for the second image I used a custom white balance. There is definitely a HUGE difference. Sometimes there wont be such a big difference but as you can see it does happen. The first image there is an orange cast on the picture. I definitely don’t want this in my portraits as my subjects would be Oompa Loompas! The second image shows the colors as how my eyes saw it. What was white is white.
And then here is the final after I edited it. You can see that I did warm it up from the original but it is not as warm with the Auto White Balance picture.
I hope this helps and as you begin to practice with your white balance settings let us know how it’s going!