White Balance: Photoshop fixes and in-camera solutions for any situation

    | Photography for Beginners | 12/09/2013 00:01am

    Using white balance in mixed lighting

    Most situations don’t conform to one colour temperature, and you’ll often find yourself photographing in mixed lighting, such as sunlight and shade.

    You can either rely on Auto White Balance to choose a setting, or use a preset for the dominant light source. Shooting raw enables you to produce versions of the image with different white balance settings that can then be blended together.

    White balance in mixed lighting: shade

    Here, the white balance has been set to Daylight, meaning the sunlit side has the correct colour balance. The side in shadow is rendered with a blue tone as a result

    White balance in mixed lighting: sun

    In this image it’s been set to Shade, so the right side of the image is neutral. The sunlit side is too ‘warm’. The left image feels more natural, as we expect shadows to be ‘cooler’

    Dealing with mixed lighting on the computer

    Dealing with mixed lighting on the computer

    Scenes aren’t always illuminated by just one light source, which means that a global white balance adjustment may not produce the result you want. If you’re using Photoshop, you can use the selective adjustment tools in Camera Raw to edit the white balance in specific areas.

    The shaded area in this shot of a tiger, for example, looks cool, while the background is warm, so we’ve used the Adjustment Brush to select the shaded area, then adjusted the Temperature to produce a warmer, more pleasing result.

    You can do a similar thing with the Graduated Filter tool, for example, to adjust the colour of a sky.

    PAGE 1: What is white balance?
    PAGE 2: Correcting white balance in-camera
    PAGE 3: Using white balance in mixed lighting
    PAGE 4: Correcting white balance in Photoshop & Adobe Camera Raw
    PAGE 5: Why it’s OK to use the ‘wrong’ white balance setting


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    Posted on Thursday, September 12th, 2013 at 12:01 am under Photography for Beginners.

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