Question on attached photo

Started Nov 24, 2012 | Questions thread
Press Correspondent
Press Correspondent Veteran Member • Posts: 3,345
Even better :)

David Franklin wrote:

I can't answer your question for other pictures, but for the one you posted, there is one important hint. Look at the backlight falling on the girls shoulders. See the srong orange cast, much warmer than, for instance, the girls' faces? This is most likely from ambient tungsten or other warm ambient lighting sources in the environment where the picture was taken. Your shutter speed, 1/60 of a second, is just long enough to let ambient light effect the color temperature of your overall exposure, including the front lit area that is mostly illuminated by your flash, thereby making it look a little too warm as well, in proportion to the amount of ambient light affecting the exposure. If you used auto white balance, the result you got wasn't too bad under the circumstances, and, if you used the manual flash setting to set your white balance, then your result would be fairly predictable, as it would only be pertinent to the flash portion of the existing illumination. To correct for this, you would need to "up" your shutter speed to 1/200 of a second to minimize the effect of ambient light, but, keep in mind that that would then make your background, lit by much less light overall - only lit by your flash - much darker and less "natural" looking, unless the flash was either an overal bounce off the ceiling, or if the background lit by a second slaved flash.

Summary: there is no easdy answer, only a list of possible compromises, the last of which lies in some careful post processing.

You also could have used ISO 100 or 200 max. instead of 1600 to get less noise and better image quality. Shortening the shutter from 60 to 200 would reduce the ambient light 3 times. Reducing ISO to 100 - 16 times. Doing both - more than 50 times. You probably would not see the lights outside the window, but judging by the shadow, the orkid would still be visible.

If you want to use flash in combination with tungsten at high ISO, you should put an orange gel filter on the flash to make flash the same color as tungsten. Gel filters come with Canon EX600-RT or can be purchased separately. Once all light is of the same color, the camera white balance will work better plus it would be a lot easier for you to correct colors in post processing.

I shot a portrait once with D800 at high ISO with flash, very similar to your shot, except the result was much worse. The flash and tungsten came from different angles in about the same amount, so the face was different colors on different sides no matter what you do in post processing. The only solution was to convert it to black and white. This is another argument against a built-in flash: I have not seen gel filter holders for it, although one cuold simply hold the filter or just tape it to the camera.

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