Trouble with fall leaf colors

Started Oct 3, 2012 | Discussions
cxsparc
cxsparc Veteran Member • Posts: 3,430
Trouble with fall leaf colors

I had a similar issue, even worse with my XZ-1 when photographing a tree during fall last year.

Today, I shot a tree with leaves radiating in a strictly lemon yellow.

In the EVF/LCD I could already see that the leaves turned more into a rusty orange inspite of the red channel not clipping.

I really wonder what goes on in the camera with these colors, since it is NOT an issue of WB.

In PS, I changed the tone color for orange and green, but it stil isn't quite there.

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baltimorecaesar Regular Member • Posts: 470
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

The White Balance looks to be set to auto. How are you sure that you're white balance is not the problem? Are you shooting RAW using a grey card or color key?

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RGBaker Contributing Member • Posts: 962
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors
1

It might be a 'problem' at the infrared end of the scale -- foliage responds quite dramatically to IR and perhaps the IR filtration falls just a little short in this instance.  I've never researched what to do if you are troubled by too much IR, but I suspect there is a filter that will help.

GB

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flint-hill Senior Member • Posts: 1,215
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

To make the tree in the first image lemon-yellow, I had to blue-shift the reds by 37 degrees, a *huge* adjustment (PS CS5 hue-saturation).    I can't imagine what could cause that degree of shift.

I don't have a good theory for how the red channel got so loaded up.   I get good yellows on the 5N most of the time.  For example, here's one shot RAW + AWB using the 55-210 a few days ago.  No color adjustments applied in post.

Sorry not to be of more help.

Lightshow
Lightshow Veteran Member • Posts: 6,617
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

Is your monitor calibrated?

Change your WB to daylight and see if that helps you see in camera what you're seeing with your eye.

RAW should permit you to  get the right yellow, in LR it's easy to shift colors.

on the HSL/COLOR/B&W panel click the hue tab then you can adjust all the similar colors at once.

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Lightshow
Lightshow Veteran Member • Posts: 6,617
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

In PS, you can select by color, then de-select everything not in the area you want to change, then you should be able to shift the hue of what's selected in the image adjustment menu.

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skalsa1 Contributing Member • Posts: 535
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

Everybody knows NEXs colors are very bad. I sold my 5N and 7 because of its flat and not acurate colors. I havent seen such a bad jpg ever. They have very good sesnsors but if you compare jpg from for ex Nikon D7000 and NEX 5N, colors are totally different. and these cams share the same sensor..

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Lng0004 Senior Member • Posts: 2,602
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

There's definitely a color cast in your images. I would suggest correcting WB before shooting (or shoot RAW and do it after).

cxsparc
OP cxsparc Veteran Member • Posts: 3,430
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

To all:

I am sure it is not an issue of WB because I always shoot JPG+RAW. I could move around the WB in Adobe PS anyway without improving it. Correcting it with the color sliders (what I did) results in the ground grass to be discolored, as can be seen in the second shot above. Manually selecting the tree leafs is rather difficult.

@Lightshow: Color selcting might help, but I don't quite remeber how to select this way.

I guess the IR thing is on the right track, because it has to do something only with the leafs, since the ground colors are ok. So any approach (like WB) trying to correct/change the entire image will fail.

I observed the histogramm before and after shooting, there is no overloading the red channel either. So it is probably the problem that too much IR light is reflected from the afternoon sun onto the sensor resulting in a much to red picture.

But I am not going to buy an additional expensive IR filter. Pity!

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D Cox Forum Pro • Posts: 21,544
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors
1

I went out this morning and shot some yellow autumn foliage (mostly lime trees), and they have come out yellow, as they looked. This is with AWB, on a 5N, with manual lens.

So your problem is not universal.

RGBaker Contributing Member • Posts: 962
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors
1

If it is an IR problem, the results will vary dramatically by time of day -- the 'worst' time for IR contamination will be high sun, low angle sun (and so more atmosphere for the light path) will have less.  Google reveals various IR cut filters priced similar to a quality polarizing filter.  Seems a solvable problem that will only reveal itself in certain specific circumstances.

GB

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DuncanDovovan
DuncanDovovan Senior Member • Posts: 1,277
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

RGBaker wrote:

If it is an IR problem, the results will vary dramatically by time of day -- the 'worst' time for IR contamination will be high sun, low angle sun (and so more atmosphere for the light path) will have less.  Google reveals various IR cut filters priced similar to a quality polarizing filter.  Seems a solvable problem that will only reveal itself in certain specific circumstances.

GB

If it is an IR issue (subject soaked in IR), then how would beach photos look?

Also: suppose it is IR causing this, would the reaction of the camera not be to move the colors away from red?

I'd like to understand what happens when you set the camera to daylight instead of AWB.

Also, would be nice to have a download link for the RAW file to investigate.

I have to wait 1 more week I guess for nature to produce a similar foliage here where I live.

I suspect the AWB is recognizing this as a sunset image and is deliberately moving this into the reds.

DuncanDovovan
DuncanDovovan Senior Member • Posts: 1,277
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

You may also want to take a look here:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3277779

RGBaker Contributing Member • Posts: 962
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors
1

DuncanDovovan wrote:

If it is an IR issue (subject soaked in IR), then how would beach photos look?

Also: suppose it is IR causing this, would the reaction of the camera not be to move the colors away from red?

The presence of IR light is not the problem, it is the particular subject and how it reflects IR (foliage) and the how the sensor represents IR light.  If -- and it is an if -- the foliage shot offered by the OP is suffering from IR 'contamination' it is the combination of foliage reflecting much IR, a noticable (as opposed to minimal) colour shift as a result of the IR, and a sensor that reveals the IR as an increase in the 'red' spectrum but is not accounted for in the AWB parameters.
Beach photos would be less prone to issues as skin is not a big reflector of IR, such IR as is present would look 'normal' if adding to the red spectrum, ans such foliage as is typical at a beach is less likely to be a delicate and specific yellow that would reveal red contamination issues.
All these same problems were typical in the days of film, some of which were very sensitive to IR light.

GB

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zackiedawg
zackiedawg Forum Pro • Posts: 30,322
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

I can't say I've ever had any issue with color trueness in any type of foliage with either of my NEXs.  I shot extensive fall colors with the NEX3 in all types of varying light and got exactly what I was seeing in yellows, oranges, reds, greens of grass, and sky blues.  With the NEX-5N I haven't yet encountered fall foliage, but yellow is a very common foliage color in Florida and I haven't experienced any difficulty with accuracy in everything from bright light to overcast, high noon to late day angled sun.

That said, most of this is with Auto WB, occasionally set manually, and shooting predominantly in JPG.

Don't know if that helps at all...but with half-a-dozen lenses I haven't had any issues on the NEX so far.

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baltimorecaesar Regular Member • Posts: 470
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

cxsparc wrote:

...I am sure it is not an issue of WB because I always shoot JPG+RAW. I could move around the WB in Adobe PS anyway without improving it. Correcting it with the color sliders (what I did) results in the ground grass to be discolored, as can be seen in the second shot above. Manually selecting the tree leafs is rather difficult....

Just to clarify, are you trying to adjust the white balance in Photoshop?  If so, how are you bringing in the RAW file?  The reason I'm asking is that if you are just bringing in the out-of-camera JPG, you're locked into the white balance that was set by the camera.  RAW+JPG mode is good if you want a file that you are quickly able to work with, but if your WB isn't set correctly then your JPG is going to be basically worthless.  If you are processing the RAW file, then exporting a JPG that was generated directly from the RAW file using a program such as Lightroom and you still have issues with White Balance, then there is indeed a problem with either your camera or lens.

Forgive me if this all seems obvious, I'm just trying to figure out what's going on.

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cxsparc
OP cxsparc Veteran Member • Posts: 3,430
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

Well, OF COURSE I edit the raw file in Adobe Photoshop and try to correct the WB of this file, not of the JPG file.

Here for anybody to try, the link to the raw file, about 16 MB.

Feel free to experiment, the leaves were lime yellow.

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B7M1e-58_QMjaFMtUkZpY2hMVDg

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baltimorecaesar Regular Member • Posts: 470
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

I didn't think you can open RAW files in Photoshop?

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Pat Senior Member • Posts: 1,608
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

Could it be something peculiar with your workflow plus a little bit due to memory/perception?

I am considering buying a NEX so I was interested in whether or not there really is a color issue with NEX cameras. I took your raw file into PS6 (using 16 bit/Adobe RGB color profile settings) and made NO color corrections whatsoever. I merely increased exposure a little in ACR before importing it into PS. Then I reduced and used Save to Web, specifying conversion to sRGB.  This is what I got:

While perhaps it is not as "lime yellow" as it is in your memory, it certainly is much less red than your original. So I'm thinking maybe you used some funky color space and then didn't convert to sRGB before saving? I have no idea, but I certainly didn't get the results you did.

Since you said the tree was "lime yellow," I did attempt a slight color correction using selective color to make it a little more limey-yellow ...

I have no clue what your eyes saw but maybe this is closer.  At any rate it doesn't appear there is an issue with fall foliage in your NEX camera.  Unless what you really saw was really really electric yellow-green, in which case I've never seen a tree like that!

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DuncanDovovan
DuncanDovovan Senior Member • Posts: 1,277
Re: Trouble with fall leaf colors

cxsparc wrote:

Well, OF COURSE I edit the raw file in Adobe Photoshop and try to correct the WB of this file, not of the JPG file.

Here for anybody to try, the link to the raw file, about 16 MB.

Feel free to experiment, the leaves were lime yellow.

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B7M1e-58_QMjaFMtUkZpY2hMVDg

When I import your RAW file into Aperture, I do not see orange colors at all in the tree?

The unprocessed picture shows more like your heavily changed picture?

What ColorSpace are you working in in PS? Is your monitor calibrated?

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