PERFECTING YOUR INDOOR WHITE BALANCE

Guys, I kind of love that I'm talking a lot about editing this week, it's fun! Last week I shared this post, and Chelsea asked, "How do you get your white balance so perfect indoors?" White balance is hard, right? It can be so tricky and discouraging.

Our tiny house has actually been a real challenge at getting the white balance to look right. Our walls are a light creamy yellow color and so is the ceiling. As a photographer it can actually be really frustrating because that light creamy yellow color reflects. If I'm not careful my photos come out looking yellow and green and gross, ha! The second thing that has been a challenge is that we have skylights, which cast a blue haze. In the end I'm always struggling with two different temperatures and tones in my photos, whew.

WHITE BALANCE

Let's talk white balance. Monday, I posted a few editing tips and shared that for the most part I shoot in either auto white balance or "cloudy." You can also check out this in-depth post about the different white balance options your camera has.  When shooting indoors you can go down to roads in regards to white balance. You can choose one of the preset options your camera has or you can shoot in Kelvin. Kelvin will give you the most control over your white balance and will give you the best white balance straight from your camera. The tricky thing with Kelvin is that until you get comfortable with the range that Kelvin has it will be a guessing game.

THE KEVLIN CHEAT

If you want to experiment with the range of Kelvin without taking a million photos you can actually start in Photoshop. As long as you are shooting in RAW you can adjust your white balance. In the image below you can see that I circled a specific number. That specific number is the kelvin reading. If you play around with the slider you can view how the temperature changes in your photos and how the number correlates with the overall white balance of your photo. Getting a handle on those kelvin numbers in Photoshop will give a better understanding of shooting in kelvin with you camera.

SEEING THE DIFFERENCE

The photos below are photos that I shared in this post, when Chelsea asked, "How do you get your white balance so perfect indoors?" For these photos I shot like I normally do. I shot with our Nikon D300s and our 35mm lens. I shot with a tripod ensuring that I could shoot with a long exposure to get as much light in the shot as I hoped for. I shot with auto white balance. I shot with an ISO of 250 and I shot with an f-stop of 2.5.

All those elements combined resulted in the before photo below. As you can tell it's a little dark, it looks a little green, and the overall lighting and temperature of the photo isn't that great. For editing these photos I followed the same eight steps that I shared in this .

1.) Because I could tell this photo was a little underexposed I pumped up the exposure first. I knew that once the exposure was correct that I would be able to adjust the white balance more appropriately.

2.) I can tell that this photo is too warm and too green. I adjusted the temperature and tone of this photo to result in a more balanced white balance. Often times when adjusting the temperature and tone in your white balance it's based on how you are seeing it. It's based on how you think it looks best. As you become more comfortable editing you'll also become more better at knowing how your photos look best.

3.) I finished off this photo by adjusting the richness of the photo by a increasing the blacks. I added a smidge of brightness and increased the contrast, clarity, and vibrance.

It's really tough to achieve a perfect white balance in camera, even when you're working in Kelvin. But if you give yourself the time and practice you can find the perfect white balance your looking for in your editing process. Do y'all have any specific questions about editing or photography? I would love to answer them! xoxo! Samantha