Please help advice on WB. Which card and why? What's this one called?

Started Jan 21, 2012 | Discussions thread
JasonReplica
Regular MemberPosts: 184
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Re: Please help advice on WB. Which card and why? What's this one called?
In reply to Robin Casady, Jan 22, 2012

As Michael stated above the whole point of a grey card is to be grey - or gray depending on where in the world you are! The neutrality of the card under various lighting has to be the prime concern. A card that is not neutral is not worth using as it will just introduce more confusion into the mix.

From personal experience, and that including working as a retoucher, printer, technical assistant to photographers, and also as a photographer myself, I really like the X-Rite (was Gretag) ColourChecker and ColorChecker Passport for in-shot reference. The samples on these items are superbly controlled and very reliable.

I advise anyone I'm processing files for to shoot raw and take a shot of one of these as large as possible in the frame each time the colour temperature is changed.

The card should be under the same lighting as the model or product, this includes any gels or filters that will be used in the final shot. Once back in the studio it's then a simple matter to use the grey on the card for reference to perform an initial colour balance and sync this across all the shots under this setup. I also use the colour swatches as guides when setting product colours or skin tone when I don't have the physical reference to hand.

The software that comes with the ColourChecker Passport also allows you to create a colour profile for your particular camera, lens and lighting setup which can then be used in either Camera Raw or Lightroom. I've found this system very reliable for commercial, wedding and personal work.

And before anyone asks - I don't sell these products or have any affiliation with X-Rite. I just use their tools to help me make a living!

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Regards
Jason
Replica Imaging Limited
Derbyshire UK
http://www.replica-imaging.co.uk
http://www.runawaypixels.net

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