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When it comes to working on changing and enhancing the colors in our photographs, there are so many different tools which we can use, it's just amazing. Here we're going to take a look at one of my favorite tools, it is Color Balance. You can access Color Balance by clicking on this icon here and I like this tool because it allows us to work really quickly and visually. Here you can see I have a few sliders. The sliders are color coded so it's easy to know how these are going to affect your photograph. We can also target different tones.
Let's start off in our midtones, which is the default, which you've selected, and here I'm going to bring up my reds and also my yellows. And simply by making this adjustment, we can see it's really change the overall characteristics of the sunrise photograph. Next, we can target different areas as well. Let's say, we go into our shadows. Well, in the shadows, I could then brighten those up by adding some red to those and all of a sudden, well, it completely changed this color palette. We could change this by cooling and often having some cool and warm tones together or we could just warm this up and have these kind of brilliant reds.
By changing the tone really, it's focusing in on the Brightness value of your photographs. If we want the brighter tones like these tones in here to change more aggressively or in a more focused way, just go to Highlights and you can see that you can start to work on that tonal area. And sometimes by having these controls, well, it can help you come up with these different colors which you can work together in order to create perhaps an interesting photograph like this here. Let's take a look at that before and after, here's before and now here's after.
Well, this example is pretty dramatic; what about one which is a bit more subtle. Let's take a look at another photograph, this family portrait. Here once again, let's click on Color Balance. This time, I'll work on my midtones and just warm this up a little bit. Adding a touch of red, also a little bit of yellow. As I add these amounts, I need to go back and forth between my sliders and perhaps add a little bit of magenta to here. And I'm just looking to try to add some more to this photograph which was captured at the end of the day.
How much color you've applied or how much of a yellow or red or whatever it is, is really just up to you. It's kind of like you're changing this color just to your own taste or to what you like to see. Here we have that before a little bit too cool, now nice warm and inviting those nice colors that you get at dusk. Well, let's look at one more image; this time we have another photograph captured at sunset but rather than making this warm, rather than bringing out reds and yellows, I want to deepen the blues.
So once again, we're going to use Color Balance. Here we'll click on the Color Balance icon. And in this case, we're just going to increase the blues and also the cyans. The cyans allow us to control what the color of that blue is; is it a little bit more purple or is it a little bit more cyan. Here I just want to mix those together until I have that nice mix, and also perhaps add in a little bit of magenta or green if that might help, and then let's take a look. Here it is before and then now after.
And so as you can see from these few examples and why I included these is you can use Color Balance in order to come up with really dramatic enticing colors. Other times you may make subtle adjustments and then still others, you may just look to draw out the colors which are already there in order to further your vision for how you want your pictures to look, and Color Balance is one of those tools that you want to include in your suite of tools.
There is no one tool which is best, rather it's knowing how to use all of these different tools and then experimenting a little bit in order to discover which tools and techniques will work best when trying to modify or enhance the colors in your pictures.
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