October 21, 2014, 03:19:44 PM

Poll

What is a WB setting for the golden hours?

Kelvin temperature or custom?
20 (83.3%)
Shadow WB?
4 (16.7%)

Total Members Voted: 24

Author Topic: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?  (Read 7890 times)

Zv

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #30 on: December 22, 2013, 07:49:04 PM »
Also in post you want to see and control the amount of color shift as the sun sinks. For example in shot no 1. lets say you correct WB to 5000k and then sync all. Great but now shot 100 is the wrong color because by that point the sun went down and things got cooler and you wanted to preserve that look. Auto is too inconsistent and you'd have to muck about fixing a lot more shots then resyncing. With a fixed value you know how much or how less you need to move it by.
Sorry for removing most of the comments to reply I just wanted to avoid another tunnel thread (there was one where we ended up making fun  :) ).
I do not disagree in concept too much I think. I just believe it is the same with ACR +1 step.
You just mention an example of a 5000K temperature applied to all via sync. Isn't the same if you have it all at 5000K at the time of shooting?
In both cases you would do either:
1. minor tweeks to some and/or
2. preserve the look of some.

Either starting from 5500K (or 5000) at the time of shooting or from a set temperature from ACR which by the way may also be the same (say 5500K or 5000)...

So I believe it is just a step difference either way  (always talking about raw files)

Now, I have observed that my 5D2 and 5D3 are way off (too warm) at tungsten lighting (as was my 40D). In that case a preset value in K would give better results from the start (which seems to be around 2700K at least for many of my latest interior shooting cases). Still it is not big deal to apply at post and I have the advantage of not forgetting the camera to that value.

It is just the freedom that raw files give us. I believe both ways are acceptable and it actually comes down to personal preference.

Ah yes I see what you're saying now. It's just an extra step to level all images in post to the same value. Hmmm yeah I guess that is essentially the same idea. Fair enough.

Btw what ever happened to that tunnel thread? Did it break the forum? CR was a bit wonky the last few days!
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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #30 on: December 22, 2013, 07:49:04 PM »

tron

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #31 on: December 22, 2013, 09:20:39 PM »
Also in post you want to see and control the amount of color shift as the sun sinks. For example in shot no 1. lets say you correct WB to 5000k and then sync all. Great but now shot 100 is the wrong color because by that point the sun went down and things got cooler and you wanted to preserve that look. Auto is too inconsistent and you'd have to muck about fixing a lot more shots then resyncing. With a fixed value you know how much or how less you need to move it by.
Sorry for removing most of the comments to reply I just wanted to avoid another tunnel thread (there was one where we ended up making fun  :) ).
I do not disagree in concept too much I think. I just believe it is the same with ACR +1 step.
You just mention an example of a 5000K temperature applied to all via sync. Isn't the same if you have it all at 5000K at the time of shooting?
In both cases you would do either:
1. minor tweeks to some and/or
2. preserve the look of some.

Either starting from 5500K (or 5000) at the time of shooting or from a set temperature from ACR which by the way may also be the same (say 5500K or 5000)...

So I believe it is just a step difference either way  (always talking about raw files)

Now, I have observed that my 5D2 and 5D3 are way off (too warm) at tungsten lighting (as was my 40D). In that case a preset value in K would give better results from the start (which seems to be around 2700K at least for many of my latest interior shooting cases). Still it is not big deal to apply at post and I have the advantage of not forgetting the camera to that value.

It is just the freedom that raw files give us. I believe both ways are acceptable and it actually comes down to personal preference.

Ah yes I see what you're saying now. It's just an extra step to level all images in post to the same value. Hmmm yeah I guess that is essentially the same idea. Fair enough.

Btw what ever happened to that tunnel thread? Did it break the forum? CR was a bit wonky the last few days!
It did not! We have to try harder next time!  ;D  ;D ;D ;

Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #32 on: December 23, 2013, 04:19:24 AM »

Many thanks to all of you for your feedback. It seems that I may try between setting the WB to 5,500K or to use Shade WB so, consistency in WB looks to be very benefitial for later post-processing.
I don't think you understood the message!
 
Use RAW. 
 
WB setting in the camera does not affect the raw image, it just adds a image tag telling DPP to convert it later. 
 
CHANGING THE WB SETTING IN CAMERA DOES NOTHING TO THR RAW IMAGE.  ONLY DPP READS IT (maybe some software guesses)
In lightroom, you can set the white balance equivalent to any of the in-camera settings to what looks good to you, and duplicate it across all your shots.  Don't change it in camera unless you are shooting jpegs.
 
See the Adobe white paper
 
www.adobe.com/digitalimag/pdfs/ps_workflow_sec3.pdf

Don Haines

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #33 on: December 23, 2013, 09:12:59 AM »
I ramdomly get good WB on my pictures taken during the golden hours so I have to post process many of them later. What is a good Kelvin temperature for WB?

This is a question that has no answer.

The white balance for a sunset is not consistant... a lot depends on how much moisture and dust is in the air and how close the sun is to the horizon. There is no right value to set it to.... plus, for artistic reasons, you may wish to enhance colours or you may not.

I STRONGLY recomend shooting in RAW and post-processing the shot. Post-processing is a necessary skill for any photographer, it is not a crutch, it is an integral part of the creative process.
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gbchriste

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #34 on: December 23, 2013, 02:23:21 PM »
I use a Lastolite EZBalance and do a custom in-camera white balance.  During golden hour, the color of the ambient light is changing constantly so I will rebalance the in-camera setting every 10 minutes or so, or any time we move from one lighting condition to another.  My goal is to get a raw image with a neutral WB.

Now, in most cases we expect "golden  hour" photos to have more warmth in them.  And in PP I will adjust the color temp accordingly to get the finished effect I want.  But I always want to start those adjustment with a neutral image.

Zv

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #35 on: December 25, 2013, 11:59:09 AM »
I use a Lastolite EZBalance and do a custom in-camera white balance.  During golden hour, the color of the ambient light is changing constantly so I will rebalance the in-camera setting every 10 minutes or so, or any time we move from one lighting condition to another.  My goal is to get a raw image with a neutral WB.

Now, in most cases we expect "golden  hour" photos to have more warmth in them.  And in PP I will adjust the color temp accordingly to get the finished effect I want.  But I always want to start those adjustment with a neutral image.

You do a custom WB every 10mins? And you shoot RAW? And you adjust it anyway in post?

Why? Your reason makes no sense. Why does it have to be neutral to begin with? You could set it to Tungsten and it wouldn't matter. You're gonna change it to whatever you like later.

I feel like we've been over this!!! Come on people it's RAW ffs!!!
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scottkinfw

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #36 on: December 25, 2013, 10:56:15 PM »
I gave up on the white card thing.  For me, the nature of "Golden Hour" light changes so much and so quickly, that messing with the white card and setting the custom wb could cause me to loose a shot that may only present itself for a moment. 

In pp, I will adjust the image to be what I want anyway, so I don't bother.  I shoot raw.

If I was shooting in a studio or say industrial where absolute color match counts, I would use my Lastolite WB.
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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #36 on: December 25, 2013, 10:56:15 PM »

LetTheRightLensIn

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #37 on: December 26, 2013, 03:00:38 AM »
I ramdomly get good WB on my pictures taken during the golden hours so I have to post process many of them later. What is a good Kelvin temperature for WB?

cloudy preset seems to work best as a quick starting point, autowb removes too much of the glow

white balance cards are no good since they just bring everything back to non-golden hour lighting, they correct AGAINST golden hour tones or any other lighting tones

ideally i'd view liveview in realtime on a calibrated screen and adjust custom wb in field to match what i saw, but i don't have such a setup

tolusina

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #38 on: December 26, 2013, 04:57:38 AM »
I've found live view with exposure simulation active to be very useful in any difficult lighting situations.
On a 6D, I switch to live view, adjust exposure to your taste for the scene, hit the Q button, up/down on the pad until I get to WB, SET, left'right on the pad to get to K, INFO, then left'right on the pad to suit, finally, SET.
Since I still far prefer focusing and composing through the finder, I exit live view for the actual shot.
Tweak the result in post as and if needed, SOC should be very close to what you had in mind.
 
Takes longer to read this than it does to do it, I've found results gratifying.
 
 
 
 
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gbchriste

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #39 on: December 26, 2013, 11:41:57 AM »
I use a Lastolite EZBalance and do a custom in-camera white balance.  During golden hour, the color of the ambient light is changing constantly so I will rebalance the in-camera setting every 10 minutes or so, or any time we move from one lighting condition to another.  My goal is to get a raw image with a neutral WB.

Now, in most cases we expect "golden  hour" photos to have more warmth in them.  And in PP I will adjust the color temp accordingly to get the finished effect I want.  But I always want to start those adjustment with a neutral image.

You do a custom WB every 10mins? And you shoot RAW? And you adjust it anyway in post?

Why? Your reason makes no sense. Why does it have to be neutral to begin with? You could set it to Tungsten and it wouldn't matter. You're gonna change it to whatever you like later.

I feel like we've been over this!!! Come on people it's RAW ffs!!!

Just because my workflow makes no sense to you doesn't mean it doesn't make perfect sense to me.  Your criticism is unfounded and frankly quite rude considering you don't know all the facts.

On a personal level peculiar to me, I have a moderate color vision deficiency that makes dialing in large corrections by eye very difficult.  I learned a long time ago that if I just take whatever white balance the RAW file happens to spit out at and then try to "fix" it, I'll screw it up completely.  Conversely, if I start with a neutral image, I can easily make small adjustments to the temp and tint sliders to get it looking the way I want.  For 99% of the images I shoot, even those during golden hour, that usually means just bumping the temp slider up a bit to get a little more warmth in the image and I'm done. 

On a more technical level, I could just easily say it doesn't make any sense to take a bunch of raw images with a random WB setting and then sit there are try to guess, experiment, or otherwise analyze what adjustments need to be made to take it from whatever it was captured at to whatever it needs to be in the final image.  Before I even download my session, I know that for all but the most unusual images I'm going to be bumping the temp up about 300-400.  The very few remaining that need something else, I can deal with one at a time, even if that means getting my perfect-color-vision wife to sit with me for a couple of minutes and deal with the 5 or 6 images that need that extra attention.

mackguyver

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #40 on: December 26, 2013, 12:28:23 PM »
gbchriste, I don't want to wade into the argument but agree that each person should work however they want to work.

I have used the exact same technique as you and got bizarre readings at the edge of the light - things like 11,000k as I said in my prior post.  Thinking back (it's been many years) I probably underexposed the reference shots, possibly skewing the results.

One other thought not discussed here is that nature shooters rarely have any reliable white balance references to use in post.  You can't click on a door frame, wall, sign, etc. when your photos are of trees, water, or wildlife :)

Since upgrading to a wide gamut monitor, I've noticed that I am noticing white balance more and more in my shots and frequently shoot my EZBalance or ColorChecker Passport for later reference in post (not for calibration in camera).  The Passport is handy because it's smaller and has 3 levels of Warm and 3 levels of Cool patches you can click on as well if you're not happy with the neutral gray.

Bruce Photography

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #41 on: December 26, 2013, 03:28:49 PM »
My personal approach is to shoot raw with auto-wb and worry about the wb later

+1

+1 to the +1

tolusina

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #42 on: December 26, 2013, 05:40:52 PM »
.... I have a moderate color vision deficiency .....
....... my perfect-color-vision wife......
Don't run yourself down about it, some degree of color blindness is more common among human males that females.
See.... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Color_blindness
 
If you test, you may find you have better night vision than your wife, ;)
40 on 6

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #42 on: December 26, 2013, 05:40:52 PM »

gbchriste

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #43 on: December 26, 2013, 06:06:56 PM »
gbchriste, I don't want to wade into the argument but agree that each person should work however they want to work.

I have used the exact same technique as you and got bizarre readings at the edge of the light - things like 11,000k as I said in my prior post.  Thinking back (it's been many years) I probably underexposed the reference shots, possibly skewing the results.

One other thought not discussed here is that nature shooters rarely have any reliable white balance references to use in post.  You can't click on a door frame, wall, sign, etc. when your photos are of trees, water, or wildlife :)

Since upgrading to a wide gamut monitor, I've noticed that I am noticing white balance more and more in my shots and frequently shoot my EZBalance or ColorChecker Passport for later reference in post (not for calibration in camera).  The Passport is handy because it's smaller and has 3 levels of Warm and 3 levels of Cool patches you can click on as well if you're not happy with the neutral gray.

I agree that the method I describe isn't practical for every situation. I've started doing more nature/scenic work lately and I don't bother with the WB reference card in those situations for exactly the reason you mention.  In those cases I do use one of the camera presets and then adjust in PP.

But the difference that is most pertinent is most of my work is natural light portraits.  In those cases, there is a certain expectation as to the range of acceptable colors that the skin tones can fall in to.  Any thing too cool or too warm in the skin tones and it ruins the shot.  So in using the EZBalance, I have the subject hold it right up to their face when I take my in-camera adjustment.  That assures me I have the best possible capture of neutral skin tones, and then I can make the small adjustments I want from there.

In the case of a purely scenic/landscape shot, the range of colors that can be ascribed to the elements in the scene have a lot more flexibility.  I can take a sky or mountain range from very cool to very warm, and every where in between and still render a scene that appears within the range of acceptable colors for human perception.  But if I do that with a human face and turn them in to a Smurf or Ommpa Loompa, the image just doesn't work.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2013, 06:09:50 PM by gbchriste »

gbchriste

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #44 on: December 26, 2013, 06:08:14 PM »
.... I have a moderate color vision deficiency .....
....... my perfect-color-vision wife......
Don't run yourself down about it, some degree of color blindness is more common among human males that females.
See.... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Color_blindness
 
If you test, you may find you have better night vision than your wife, ;)

No self run down involved.  I'm 56 so I've worked around this all my life.  It's a running joke between me and her.

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Re: What WB to use for the golden hours (sunrise and sunset)?
« Reply #44 on: December 26, 2013, 06:08:14 PM »