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Archive for the ‘Retouching’ Category

So – What is “White Balance” ?

by Blake Robinson

August 22nd, 2013    0 Comments     Add Comment
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Sara one

What is White Balance? The name should really be color balance. Have you ever taken a picture inside, in flourescent lights, where the faces look green? This is a typical white balance problem. The camera is set for a certain type of light and the actual light – the color temperature of the light –  is different.

In the image above, from my recent shoot with Sara, I asked Sara to hold up a white balance card. The grey in the card is middle gray or 18% gray. After the shoot, in editing the image in Lightroom, I sampled the gray color to determine if my color was true or not. In this case, I was very close. I took the minor adjustment that Lightroom suggested and applied it automatically to all the images of our shoot.

In the studio the color temperature of my lights is 5500 Kelvin and I set my camera white balance setting to 5500K as well, so usually the color is right on. If I’m shooting outside, or inside at a location where there’s a mix of flourescent, tungsten and natural light, I’m going to use a white balance card for sure, so I can achieve true colors in the final images.

Capture0002too warm-Edit

In the image above, I’ve taken the same picture and purposely changed to white balance to an extreme level that is too “warm.” The skin tones can get too yellow and orange. However, there may be times when you start with a white balance the is “correct,” but you decide you want to warm up the picture slightly – that’s a artistic call. In this picture, I’ve gone too far.

Sara three

Here’s the other extreme – Sara is too “cool” is this image. With point and shoot and DSLR cameras, setting the white balance for auto usually works well in most cases. Or, on a cloudy day outside, for example, using the “cloudy” setting generally gives a good result. But most of the time, even with the right camera setting, I’ll adjust the white balance some while editing the picture.

This can all be a little confusing at first. If you have any questions. let me know!

Working both in the studio and on location, photographer Blake Robinson serves the Connecticut communities of Darien, New Canaan, Stamford, Norwalk, Westport and Greenwich.

“Individual, Indelible, Iconic Images”

 

 

 

Pencil Sketch Portrait

A few week ago, I took this portrait of Melanie, as part of a studio shoot. This weekend, I learned a new photo editing technique, which converts a photograph into a pencil sketch – or an image that looks like a pencil sketch.

For those of you familiar with Photoshop, this process involves, in part, 1) a blend mode of Divide, 2) Gausian Blur, 3) converting for Smart Filters, 4) running the poster edge filter in the artistic filter gallery, and 5) another blend mode change to Linear Burn. Whew!

Capture0168pencil sketch

To see how this looks up close, here’s a detail of the “pencil sketch”  below.  I’m excited to do more of these sketch portraits – no pencils required!

Working both in the studio and on location, photographer Blake Robinson serves the Connecticut communities of Darien, New Canaan, Stamford, Norwalk, Westport and Greenwich.

“Individual, Indelible, Iconic Images”

Capture0168pencil sketch detail

 

 

 

 

 

 

Inspired by an Annie Leibowitz Image

Recently, I had the pleasure of shooting again with my friend, Wilhelmina, a college sophomore and an accomplished ballet dancer. (Stay tuned for other images from our recent shoot.)

I save a lot of images from magazines, online sources, etc. as possible inspirations for my shoots. At left is an iconic image by Annie Leibowitz, of the actress Anne Hathaway, for a Gap (Red) advertising campaign. I loved the soft flattering light and the pose – with the body turned to profile and face square to the camera. In my picture with Wilhelmina, we did some things in a similar fashion to the Annie Leibowitz photograph and some differently.

Compare the two images. How does each one strike you? I’d love to hear your thoughts and reactions. You can either post a comment on the blog or send me an email.

Below is a back and white version. of the same picture. It has a completely different feeling.

Thanks, Wilhelmina, for a wonderful shoot!

 

Working both in the studio and on location, photographer Blake Robinson serves the Connecticut communities of Darien, New Canaan, Stamford, Norwalk, Westport and Greenwich.