Thursday, 13 September 2012

Quick Tips – Using White Balance Settings as Warming and Cooling Filters

Usually we all use white balance settings to render accurate colours in our shots. And this is achieved by selecting the right white balance settings to match the colour temperature of the light being used. Let us now discuss how we could purposefully offset the white balance of our digital camera to simulate the effect of using warming and cooling filters.

White Balance Settings as Warming and Cooling Filters
Photo By  Sacha Fernandez White balance set to tungsten to achieve the blues

The easiest method of achieving this is to set your camera to a pre-set white balance mode that generates the desired effect. It will be helpful to have a basic understanding of what each mode does to the image so you need not do trial and error each time to wish to do something like this.

White Balance Pre set           Colour Cast

Daylight                                     Mild Amber
Flash                                         Mild Amber
Cloudy                                      Medium Amber
Shade                                        Heavy Amber
Fluorescent                                Magenta / Pink
Tungsten                                    Heavy Blue

If you are manually setting the Kelvin remember this rule to get a blue tone in your shots user lower values in the Kelvin scale e.g. 2000k and to get an amber tone to your images set the Kelvin values to a higher number for e.g. 8500k. Remember the lowest value in the Kelvin scale produces the coldest blue and the highest value produces the warmest amber and every value in between produces medium effects corresponding to the value of the numbers.

Related Reading