The biggest difficulty in photography is to portray colors in a natural way, since cameras do not see colors in the same way as our eyes. The truth is that DSLR camera are very limited in this respect, although they represent the largest share of the technological market in professional photography.
On the other hand, if you don’t want bad images or with too much artificial air, you need to take the utmost care when capturing the colors of the scene. Therefore, we have set up some tips in this regard that can contribute to better results in your digital photography.
The first thing you should take into account is the color temperature, this item varies according to the lighting source and is represented on the Kelvin scale (k). Because your biggest goal is to be able to reproduce colors in the same way that the human eye sees them, your DSLR camera should be able to interpret the color temperature.
As a rule, the lower color temperatures have an orange aspect, the highest, in turn, translate more bluish colors, both easily perceived in your photos.
On a sunny day, for example, sunlight is white with an approximate color temperature of 5500k, the shadows of this sunny day will be bluish as the color temperature circulates around 8000k.
Another example that could make color temperature more practical for you is comparing the light emitted by lamps, the same as you have in your home. They usually tend to appear yellowish in photos and have a color temperature averaging 2400k. The flashes of his camera, however, radiate a more blue light with 6000k color temperature.
White balance setting
One of the most practical ways to capture light in the most natural way possible and reproduce the same effect of our eyes, is to use the white balance on your DSLR camera. Most of these professional cameras feature automatic white balance modes that work perfectly for all types of photography.
However, when it is not possible to use automatic white balance, also called AWB on some DSLR camera models, the photographer can give small touch-ups and aids to improve the results of your photos.
Pay special attention to capturing photos in JPEG format, as in this case it will be very difficult to change the color temperature artificially in post processing. Therefore, the white balance adjustment of your DSLR camera should be perfect for capturing the images with the highest possible quality.
And when you are capturing images in RAW format? Well, although you’ll be able to change the color temperature in this format in any image editing software, spend an extra effort for the best white balance adjustment would be very interesting to avoid extra work, don’t you think?
But how to adjust the white balance of your camera properly? This is a very pertinent issue, especially if we take into account that all photographers are exposed to different sources of lighting and color temperatures, situations that contribute to the complete knowledge of the functions of the professional’s photographic equipment.
The most assertive way to adjust the white balance properly on your DSLR camera can be summarized in: refer to the result of the live view photo of your equipment. Most professional cameras feature this feature and seeing the result instantly is the best way to identify the color temperature and adjust the white balance according to your need.
Let’s say you’re capturing images inside a room, the normal lamp of the equipment would bring a more yellowish tone in your photographs, which means low color temperature reminds?
Then you would get better results by adjusting the white balance of your DSLR camera to Tungsten, usually represented by the icon of a lamp, rather than the automatic mode as usual.
The golden tip is to try your DSLR camera on different types of lighting and light sources, so you can identify the best settings of your equipment for the different conditions. In doubt, you can also refer to your camera manual for more details on the white balance.
Use a Gray card
For decades Kodak gray cards have been the most common way to get more accurate white balance from your DSLR camera.
Professional photographers have been using grey cards for years and achieve fantastic results with it. You can buy these cards in different sizes, are tools to use when you want to get the perfect color temperature.
A gray card is placed in front of the DSLR camera light meter, reflecting the light that focuses on the scene. You measure the light from it, but remember that the card has a reflectance of 18%, and the card gives you the right light to adjust the temperature of the colors in the right place.
The gray card works, but if the card is not exactly at the same angle as the object to be captured, you may not get the best results. Also, gray cards tend to get damaged by use for too long, especially if you take them everywhere inside your bag or photo kit.
For those who do not want to acquire a gray card, you can achieve the same effect using a white sheet, a simple sulfite paper in front of the camera. In this case, you will help your camera identify the perfect white for your photos, however, small changes and variations can still occur, and live viewing of the camera is the best way to track and adjust the result of the image’s end.
Now that our tips on how to reproduce colors naturally with your DSLR camera have come to an end, we would love to hear your opinion on this article and, who knows, your own balcony for a more effective white balance in photography. Please leave us a comment below!