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19 April 2013

Photo Friday: Trying to Understanding White Balance

I have seen a number of comparisons depicting the same object under different white balance settings on their cameras. I decided to do my own comparison using a clay plate my son made. By the way, I'm quite proud of my son. But, let's get to the plate.

Understanding White Balance
AV Priority, ISO 100, f3.5, exp 1/15, macro focus
Cannon PowerShot SX110

SET UP: The lighting was natural sunlight streaming through my window. It entered the photo set up from the left side. The clay plate was placed insight my DIY Lightbox. The Camera was on a tripod.

So what stands out to me is that the Tungsten setting definitely did not do he object justice. The sunlight and fluorescent had a blue cast to the colors. And the custom adjustment was more yellow then I had hoped.

Personal preference: The Sunlight example was my favorite.
Photographing Clay Art Work
Current Favorite: Uses Sunlight setting

I decided to readjust the plate and see if I could improve.

Photographing Memorabilia
AV Priority, ISO 100, f 3.5, exp 1/15, macro focus
Cannon PowerShot SX110

Just by changing the angle of the object, I now like the photograph using the Fluorescent High setting. I have no idea why that is. The Custom White Balance setting had a yellow cast to the white background. I was really surprised by this.

Understanding White Balance
Current Favorite: Uses Fluorescent High setting

By the way, I like this angle of the plate better than the previous one because the little base it is molded to can be seen.

In short, with day light streaming through the window... play with your camera white balance settings. One might a truer representation of the artifact when another setting is not. The casts are subtle side by side, but enough when viewed up close to make a difference.

And... as I keep seeing time and time again,  a little post production work is necessary to take the photo from the camera onto the computer and have the awesome white background.

Here's the final product for three of the angles that I took.

Adjusted levels from sunlight AV setting

Adjusted levels & contrast from fluorescent high AV setting

Adjusted levels & contrast from Auto White Balance AV setting

I like the backgrounds to be bright. I'd love to have them all white like they are when I'm looking at the LCD panel. Someday I'll match it better. Until then, I'm having fun. I hope you are too.

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