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Thread: Custom WB for weddings?

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    Senior Member Rawfa's Avatar
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    Custom WB for weddings?

    Hi guys,

    Even though I always shoot raw I keep reading that most photographers pre-program custom WB settings on their camera for typical traditional wedding scenarios (church, mixed light on the dance floor, etc). The A7 allows you to create a bunch of different K settings, so I was wondering if people have any pre-programmed custom WB for church, mixed light on the dance floor, etc....

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Custom WB for weddings?

    Yes and No. Depends on the camera, and how good the auto WB is.

    I've tried doing that but it doesn't seem to be all that accurate … probably because the level of light varies so widely, as well as the Kelvin. When dimmed, some of the newer energy savings lights seem to have a lower Kelvin than the manual settings go anyway.

    Throw in the variable of flash use at different levels of dragging the shutter and it gets even more complicated.

    Some cameras make it easy to shoot a custom white balance for each lighting scenario, and I do that when ever I can. That way the skin tones are pretty close. If the Bride's dress is white, I use that … or a white micro cloth I carry in my pocket.

    - Marc

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    Senior Member Rawfa's Avatar
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    Re: Custom WB for weddings?

    Hey Marc. Thanks for prompt reply. What would you suggest regarding the A7? Should I just go with the auto WB and then fix things on adobe camera raw?

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Custom WB for weddings?

    RE: Fixing in PP … on any camera, what I found is that exposures that look okay when really warm/yellow, aren't when properly white balanced in post … they often are actually underexposed looking. Probably because yellow is brighter looking than blue. So, watch out for that.

    Many of the wedding venues are really dim and they use dimmers for "mood" light. Some have "party"lighting including green which does ghastly things to skin tones. Off-camera lighting helps solve that.

    The real issue for me comes when designing a wedding album. Hopefully, the color is somewhat consistent (especially skin tones) …at least in a series of related images.

    I honestly haven't used the A7R for weddings as much as I thought I would … I've tended to favor the A99 because there are more fast aperture lenses for it, all of which are IBIS … plus, it focuses faster with less lag. But I'm working on the A7R. The new i40 flash will help make the transition.

    I mostly do available light with the A7R because the higher ISO is a bit better than the A99.

    Lately, I've avoided the ever changing ambient WB issue with off-camera lighting. I got tired of trying to correct every freaking image because the lighting was changing every 2 seconds.

    Although it has altered my approach to weddings, lighting has made me more competitive in these iPhone days where available light candid work is less appreciated because everyone thinks anyone can do it (even though they can't). Lighting scares most novice wedding shooters, so it's an edge that seems to be paying off with higher end work and more purchases of albums and prints.

    Lighting saved my a$$ at my last wedding. Almost every situation would have required ISO 3200+ because it was all so darned dark and gloomy, not to mention it was freezing out. The hanging plane posed image in this album that the client requested would not been possible without lighting … it was a cave in there.

    Kassie&JasonsAlbum - fotografz


    - Marc
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    Senior Member Malina DZ's Avatar
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    Re: Custom WB for weddings?

    Rawfa, I leave the camera in auto WB mode (for RAWs) and worry more about proper exposure. There's no color information loss due to an incorrect WB based on my experience with Sony a100 & a850.

    Besides, doesn't EVF let you decide on a fly what WB to set?

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    Re: Custom WB for weddings?

    Marc, just out of curiosity, how many strobes did you have and where were they located when you shot the plane and covered bridge pics?

    Thanks.

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Custom WB for weddings?

    Hmmm myself wedding or not I use either daylight or tungsten than adjust from there. Auto WB has been a problem for everything I have owned in the past although Sonys is pretty good but they get fooled every time by color of subject so your leaving the thinking up to the camera. You basically lost your control over the camera. Now it's not always so dire either but just something I avoid. You can also use a color passport in different lighting situations. White balance that shot than all the real images I apply that WB to it be it 10 to 2000 images depending on what your doing of course. My other trick is find a good white in a image WB that tweak it than apply to others. Obviously you need a calibrated color managed system so you see exactly what you are doing as well. But a lot of times things just come down to taste and what you like. If your shooting JPEG only than your much better doing custom WB in camera.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com
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