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Gerald Boggs

White Balance

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This is where Photoshop Elements really comes in handy.  I'd use the gray card shot and use the slider to adjust lighting.  You can lighten highlights and darken shadows, as well as play with contrast.  Plus you can burn and dodge just like in a darkroom.  If I were at the right computer I'd demonstrate.

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Posted (edited)

  Finally thought to read at my card's instructions, the only mention it makes of the white and black cards, are for when post processing for RAW shooters "The white and black cards are to set black and white points (such as in the Photoshop levels control) if you use them."

Edited by Gerald Boggs
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Here are two modified versions of those last pictures:  First, the gray card shot after clicking "auto levels" and then adjusting shadows and highlights to manually brighten highlights 49%, darken shadows 5%, and increase midtone contrast 15%:

1.jpg

Same shot, but manually tweaked levels on the RBG channel:

3.jpg

I basically compressed the exposure, cutting off the tail ends of light and dark while shifting midtones slightly darker.  I tried adjusting the highlights downward to get rid of that overexposed edge, but it darkened the background too much.

Here is the white card shot after the same steps :

2.jpg

4.jpg

 

I agree it would be ideal if you could adjust the camera to produce this with no post-processing, but I'm not smart enough to do that...

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On 2/27/2019 at 4:28 PM, Gerald Boggs said:

Saw the bit with the photo and missed this.  Not sure I understand this " It has a function for white balancing based upon sampling a portion of the picture of your choice.  That is what I use the gray card for."  Are you taking an photo of the gray card and having the program use it as a white balance?  I had read that some programs will do that, one example I remember was a sporting event with harsh lighting, and the photographer wanted to maintain a fast shutter speed.  So the first photo was his gray card and then he used that to batch set all the events photos.

The Rebel has a custom white balance option in the second menu page.  I still have to set to custom in light source.

I will have to look for that custom white balance and use it in conjunction with the Lightroom function.

So yes to your question.  I get everything set up as I want, and then place the knife(or whatever) down in the lightbox, and then place the 17% gray card on top and take a few pictures, adjusting the aperture, shutter speed and ISO as I go until I am happy.  Once I have take all of the pictures, I import all of them into Lightroom, and find the picture with the gray card.  Lightroom has a function that when you push the W key on the keyboard when "developing" a picture(that's what Lightroom calls it), Lightroom pops up this little magnifying glass that you can move around.  This is the white balancing function.  The small magnifying glass samples the area of the picture it is hovering over and when you select that area, will white adjust the entire picture based upon that sample.  So you just hover over the gray card and find the area you like and select it.  White balance done.

The nice part about this, is that once I have done that, I can then select every other picture taken with the same lighting and sync all of them to that first white balance adjustment.  So if I take 40 pictures using the same settings on my camera, in the same lighting environment, I can white balance all of them at the same time.  Very very useful.  This is what that Sports photographer was doing.

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7 hours ago, Alan Longmire said:

I agree it would be ideal if you could adjust the camera to produce this with no post-processing, but I'm not smart enough to do that...

Think of it as a quest :-) 

2 hours ago, Wes Detrick said:

This is what that Sports photographer was doing.

Sure sounds like it.

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Posted (edited)

Last round on the white balance.  Up to now, I haven't worried too much about lighting quality, but since I needed to take some work photos, I set up my light box.  Here's the box in it's stored state.  Here's the photo of the gray card for setting my white balance, and the photo afterwards.  This is about as close to how the knife looks in life as I can get.  Leaving the settings as they are, switched to a blue background.  Like as has already been said: If I want to get anything better, then I'm going to have to start learning to use some photo software.

Picture 2681 Large e-mail view.jpg

Picture 2682 Large e-mail view.jpg

Picture 2685 Large e-mail view.jpg

Picture 2686 Large e-mail view.jpg

Edited by Gerald Boggs

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