Photography Advanced: Using White Balance and EV

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Photography Advanced: Using White Balance and EV

You don’t have to be a professional photographer to take brilliant photos of your floral arrangements. You don’t even have to have a huge camera that uses a special kind of film; you can take wonderful pictures of your own, unique creative designs, with just a little knowledge and effort. I’ve covered some of the basics of picking a spot, using light and capturing color–now I’m going to take a little deeper look at how you can use white balance and evaluative metering to help you make your photos bloom.

White Balance

White balance allows your camera to determine a few things that will help your colors shine in their full glory.

Preset White Balances

Some cameras with preset white balance values will simply ask you to tell it what type of light you are using, so that it will know how to calibrate that. The choices are usually fairly ordinary and it’s a simple matter to choose one of the more common settings: fluorescent lighting, lamps, bright sunlight, so on.

If you are using this setting, using more than one type of light–say, lamps and fluorescent lighting, or two lamps with different light strengths–will work to confuse your camera settings. Stick with one type of light, choose that setting, then take your picture.

Custom White Balance

If your camera allows you to control the white balance setting, however, you have more control over your photos. Start off by focusing in on one white color in your picture–a flower, for instance, or a part of the container, or even the background. Fill the lens only with that color and then click “set” — from there your camera will better fill in all the other color values included in your bouquet. Remember, though–if you change anything–the light, the bouquet itself, the white portion of your picture–then you need to set the white balance value again, as it will change.

Evaluative Metering

Evaluative metering pretty much does the same thing as fiddling around with your shutter speed, ISO and the like (as we covered here,) but in a more automatic way. Most digital cameras have this setting, because it can be so important to taking good photos. What evaluative metering (EV) does is take a bunch of different factors of your setting into consideration–light (direct, back lighting, brightness,) position and so on, and breaks these elements down into their different zones, making adjustments to the exposure as needed. This is not a perfect operation–as with all camera controls and settings, you should take a few photos at various settings and determine the best ones for the current picture.

Bloom-Tip – Use White Balance and EV Together

  • Light is such an important part of photography that there are entire websites devoted to just that topic. If you really want to delve deep into the topic (and, for the best photos, that’s a good idea) you should visit some of them. You can, however, play around with your white balance and EV settings to produce professional-quality shots for your BloomNation website, with a little practice. Set your white balance first, then your evaluative meter values (otherwise your photo may come out with blue or orange tints.) Adjust each as needed–take lots and lots of photos, so that you’ll have many to choose from to find your perfect shot.
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