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Should WB always be corrected?


Sep 30, 2010
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#1
Hello all, as my post count suggests, im also a newbie here

So far all the articles I've read tell you about how to correct WB so that a white piece of paper still looks white, no matter the real-life lighting conditions. However, I could not find info on whether or not it is sometimes better to leave the "tint/hue" to that which the human eye saw in the scene. In order words dont correct the WB.

For a more concrete example, here is my novice hands on a 35mm/1.8 lens, D90, 1/40 Speed (Apeture priority), F1.8, Cool-white fluroscent WB setting (!)

#1

During the event, to my human eye, the lighting is quite close to this. Lighting is quite dark and amberish.

#2

This is after some post in PS

This is actually for an event, so all the other photos for the event need to have the same "WB look". Will it be acceptable for photos for an event to look very different (photo #2) compared to real-life (photo #1)? My concern is if the event organizers will be shocked that an amber-lit room becomes whitish. Thanks!
 

spree86

Senior Member
Feb 3, 2009
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Bishan
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#2
Hello all, as my post count suggests, im also a newbie here

So far all the articles I've read tell you about how to correct WB so that a white piece of paper still looks white, no matter the real-life lighting conditions. However, I could not find info on whether or not it is sometimes better to leave the "tint/hue" to that which the human eye saw in the scene. In order words dont correct the WB.

For a more concrete example, here is my novice hands on a 35mm/1.8 lens, D90, 1/40 Speed (Apeture priority), F1.8, Cool-white fluroscent WB setting (!)

#1

During the event, to my human eye, the lighting is quite close to this. Lighting is quite dark and amberish.

#2

This is after some post in PS

This is actually for an event, so all the other photos for the event need to have the same "WB look". Will it be acceptable for photos for an event to look very different (photo #2) compared to real-life (photo #1)? My concern is if the event organizers will be shocked that an amber-lit room becomes whitish. Thanks!
You should check with the organizers what they are looking for, if they want to retain the hue then just leave it, if they want it corrected then you shld correct the WB.
 

weegk

Senior Member
Jul 16, 2010
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#4
i normally give #2 . . . most people prefer #2 than #1 . . . :)

That is why they called it WB, to balance the white with the table cloth in this case. :bsmilie:
 

Jeremy1

New Member
Oct 10, 2009
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#5
#2 is more preferred but I thought WB is supposed to reflect how true to the original colour ?

I believed especially in hotel, the colour is supposed to be more amber as of the lightning used.
 

Jun 2, 2008
439
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Singapore
#6
Hmm... personally I would prefer #1 to #2 as it's closer to what my eye saw (and remembered) of the scene. But I only shoot for my own family, which could be why I prefer staying as "true" to the scene as possible for remembrance sake. (I.e. not pro, not even part-timer) :embrass:

Like what spree86 said, best to check with the organizers what they want?
 

ZerocoolAstra

Senior Member
Mar 13, 2008
9,522
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rainy Singapore
#7
I prefer #2 to #1, though I think you went a little too far in correcting the 'red-ness' in #2. Probably somewhere in between is the preferred option. Depends on individual I suppose. Maybe better to check with the person you are handing the photos to.
 

photoart

Senior Member
Feb 21, 2009
2,605
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Singapore
www.facebook.com
#8
for me, it will be on a case by case basis

if to compare you case photos, i would tweak the photo to somewhere in-between because the first photo is really too warm and the 2nd is too neutral(abit of colortone will set the mood)
 

daredevil123

Moderator
Staff member
Oct 25, 2005
21,671
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lil red dot
#9
So to sum it up...

Correct WB to the point when you like what you see.

;)
 

zac08

Senior Member
Feb 21, 2005
11,755
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East
#10
Depends on the requirements as well as mood... Some will prefer a slightly warmer picture but not too warm.

Some prefer a slightly cooler look. it's all subjective. :)

The lens and flash used can also do a part in changing this factor. :)
 

Apr 20, 2006
1,087
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#11
anyone would tell you that pix #2 is preferable.
It is a matter of taste. Germans generally like their pictures cold. Americans like their pictures warm.

Personally, I think #2 is way too cold... I'd put back a little more temperature... to give it a hint of tungsten. However, we have to be careful here. From experience, the warmth tend to get 'exagerated' in print because our eyes adjust when we view our monitors, but it does not adjust when we view hard copies.
 

catchlights

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Staff member
Sep 27, 2004
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#12
It is a matter of taste. Germans generally like their pictures cold. Americans like their pictures warm.

Personally, I think #2 is way too cold... I'd put back a little more temperature... to give it a hint of tungsten. However, we have to be careful here. From experience, the warmth tend to get 'exagerated' in print because our eyes adjust when we view our monitors, but it does not adjust when we view hard copies.
TS only show two, so from these two to pick one, most people will pick #2, but it dose not mean #2 is good, just that more acceptable.

do you see my point?
 

weegk

Senior Member
Jul 16, 2010
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#13
i agreed with you . . . #2 is much more acceptable.

I personally prefer #1 . . . but . . . clients always have the final say. :bsmilie:
 

Apr 20, 2006
1,087
0
0
#14
TS only show two, so from these two to pick one, most people will pick #2, but it dose not mean #2 is good, just that more acceptable.

do you see my point?
True. Most people would prefer #2 as per above.

The WB of #1 can work if the TS increases the brigtness (and contrast correspondingly). I have seen pictures with tungsten lighting that works.
 

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#16
Yes, and hold it consistently. Most photogs correct or adjust the image singularly on it's own, it always looks great. But when you put a few of them together or appear on a page, errrrh…….different skin tone, greys and shadows. It would be challenging, …..consistency. Our eyes cannot measure shades of greys but can detect differences very accurately.
 

nedy77

New Member
Jun 21, 2005
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#17
Yes, and hold it consistently. Most photogs correct or adjust the image singularly on it's own, it always looks great. But when you put a few of them together or appear on a page, errrrh…….different skin tone, greys and shadows. It would be challenging, …..consistency. Our eyes cannot measure shades of greys but can detect differences very accurately.
This is a very good statement. If not given a choice, it may already look good ad it is. Face with two possibilities, both weakness may be presented so it might make things worse instead of better
 

catchlights

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Sep 27, 2004
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#18
boss Winson is right, inconsistently of images in color balance is very easy spotted when it printed.

anyway, TS you can try get these two images printed, tell the lab not to do any color and density correction, than from the judging the both prints, tell us what is your finding?
 

Sep 30, 2010
82
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0
#19
Thank you so much for your insightful inputs, and taking the time to post here to help me (and any other newbies) improve

Hmm... personally I would prefer #1 to #2 as it's closer to what my eye saw (and remembered) of the scene. But I only shoot for my own family, which could be why I prefer staying as "true" to the scene as possible for remembrance sake. (I.e. not pro, not even part-timer) :embrass:

Like what spree86 said, best to check with the organizers what they want?
I prefer #2 to #1, though I think you went a little too far in correcting the 'red-ness' in #2. Probably somewhere in between is the preferred option. Depends on individual I suppose. Maybe better to check with the person you are handing the photos to.

After going for the "real-life correct" (white tablecloth) WB in PShop, I realise that this causes faces in some photos to lose their "rosiness". The "tradeoff" is quite boggling :dunno:

Yes, and hold it consistently. Most photogs correct or adjust the image singularly on it's own, it always looks great. But when you put a few of them together or appear on a page, errrrh…….different skin tone, greys and shadows. It would be challenging, …..consistency. Our eyes cannot measure shades of greys but can detect differences very accurately.
Consistent WB was my intention, but after going through 100 or so shots I realised this is much harder to do without having individual shots having some weird tints. Even harder is having a mix of flash and non-flash shots.

So to sum it up...
Correct WB to the point when you like what you see. ;)
What about during the shooting itself, how would one consider whether to shoot in "current lighting wrong WB" or "White tablecloth correct WB"? I realised this is potentially quite a biggie as many event venues like ballrooms have amber light instead of white fluroscent.
The following photo is by Kensaw in his Mininior Photography thread I hope he will be ok with me using it as an example..


If this scene was shot in the "correct" WB, this photo would not have much meaning anymore.
 

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zac08

Senior Member
Feb 21, 2005
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#20
Btw, there is a difference in correct white balance and a white balance balance in multiple source light scene.

There is a mix of tungsten and fluorescent lighting and in that kind of scenario, you can only hope to achieve a more pleasing mix.
 

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