White balance adjustment
Video: White balance adjustmentDigital cameras need to take into account the color of the light illuminating a subject in order to be able to produce the most accurate results possible. For raw captures you actually don't need to worry too much about the in camera setting for white balance. Because you can apply an adjustment after the fact with no penalty in terms of image quality. But regardless of what file format you're capturing in or which images you're working on in light room. You can always fine-tune the overall color appearance with the white balance adjustment. There are several ways that you can approach this adjustment.
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In this workshop digital imaging guru Tim Grey focuses on the Develop module of Adobe Lightroom 4. Starting with an overview of the image optimization workflow in Lightroom, Tim walks you through the process of evaluating your images and deciding what adjustments you need to make. He teaches you how to use the Develop module's presets to achieve quick results, as well as how to apply your own adjustments, from simple exposure and color adjustments to advanced options like the Tone Curve and the Graduated Filter tool. Learn techniques for cleaning up your images, applying creative adjustments, and duplicating adjustments across multiple images. Finally, get some tips for integrating Lightroom and Photoshop to create panoramas and high dynamic range images.
- Evaluating images
- Seeing a before and after view
- Correcting mistakes with the History and Snapshot features
- Develop module basics
- Fine-tuning with the Tone Curve
- Sharpening an image
- Painting adjustments into an image
- Image cleanup
- Creative adjustments
- Duplicating adjustments
White balance adjustment
Digital cameras need to take into account the color of the light illuminating a subject in order to be able to produce the most accurate results possible. For raw captures you actually don't need to worry too much about the in camera setting for white balance. Because you can apply an adjustment after the fact with no penalty in terms of image quality. But regardless of what file format you're capturing in or which images you're working on in light room. You can always fine-tune the overall color appearance with the white balance adjustment. There are several ways that you can approach this adjustment.
For starters in the basic section of the develop module we can choose a preset for white balance. These are the same options that you'll find within your camera. The as shot setting will leave the white balance set based on the way it was established in the camera. So that should produce a result that is exactly what you saw on the back of your camera's LCD display when you took the picture. But you can also choose a different option. For example, daylight, cloudy, shade, tungsten, etcetera. The auto option by the way will cause light room to try to automatically adjust the color in the image. Not based on the color of the light in the first place but based on it's own evaluation of the actual image that your working on. I'll go ahead and choose daylight, for example, and you can see that this produces a rather warm effect.
And that's because this image obviously was not actually captured under daylight conditions. It was captured under artificial lighting. So that's not the ideal approach. Fortunately, we can fine-tune things regardless of what our white-balance preset is established as, so we can fine-tune the color in the image. The Temp and Tint sliders, Temperature and Tint, Temperature related to color temperature in degrees kelvin, which is how we measure white balance. The Temp slider will allow us to shift between blue and yellow while the Tint slider allows us to shift between green and magenta. And in both cases, we're changing the overall color appearance of the image itself.
We can move the Temp slider over to the left in order to cool down the image to get more of a blueish, rather than yellow appearance in the image. And we can move the slider over to the right to make the image appear more yellow, or slightly orangeish, potentially. The Tint slider, we can move to the left to make the image appear a little bit more green, and to the right to make it look a little bit more magenta. The tint slider tends to be relatively modest adjustment compared to temperature. We can also use the white balance tool if we'd like. Simply click on the Eyedropper to activate the tool.
And then move out into the image and click on an area of the image that you believe should be perfectly neutral. Notice that as I'm moving my Mouse around the image, I'm able to see a preview of the effect in the navigator. What that means is that if I click on the spot where my Mouse is right now, then the image will look as you see it in the navigator. Notice we also have a target displayed. As I move the Eyedropper around the image, you can see a zoomed-in view of the pixels in that area.
And sometimes, that can help you in terms of pinpointing exactly the spot you want to click on. Once you find the right spot, you can click on it and the image will be adjusted based on making that area that you clicked perfectly neutral. A shade of gray, essentially. You can still fine-tune, though, even after you've used the White Balance tool or chosen a preset. You can continue to fine-tune the effect using the sliders. So often times I'll use that eye dropper to get the image close to what I think is accurate and then I can fine-tune.
For example just because an object in the image is actually neutral. In other words it doesn't have any color to it at all, it's a shade of gray does not mean that you actually want to object to appear gray. You might want the image to look a little bit warmer than neutral for example. So you can continue to fine-tune as you see fit. In this case, I think I'll leave the image relatively neutral somewhere around there, I think would probably work out pretty well. The white balance adjustments can be very key in terms of achieving accurate color in any photograph.
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