Monday, August 13, 2012

True Colours

The Saxom Warlord Helgin and his Hirdmen lurk on the edge of a wood.

Technology! I love it, I hate it! In the picture above and the one immediately below, we see my table in almost its actual colours, maybe not quite as green as it is. Its no secret that I'm not a photography buff and its beginning to annoy me that only about 1 in 4 pictures comes out in these colours.  

 Fairly close to the real colour, just a bit faded..

 The rest come out with this garish yellow glow!

 Nothing like the real thing. 

Sometimes I can tone it down a bit with my free software but sometime I have to live with it or lump the pictures. I presume it has something to do with white balance though I'll be knitted if I can find a menu option or button to set it. Perhaps if I ever stumble across the manual again.....

I have tried turning off or on each of the various lights I use to see if one of them affects it but they don't. Then I thought it made a difference if I shot towards the window or away but it doesn't. .

Its a mystery to me.


  1. wow, that's quite a difference!
    The problem I run into is the auto focus. Sometimes I get clear (ish) pictures, more or less focused on the right stuff. Other times I get out of focus shots. And I can't tell from the little pictures on the camera screen. I only find out after downloading them to my computer where I can view them full size. But I'm not going to keep pausing to download to the computer between shots.

    1. Yup been there too. Then there are the times something unwanted creeps into the picture without being noticed.

  2. I presume that you are using a digital camera, Ross. If so it is important to remember that you are NOT "wasting film" by taking multiple shots.

    I have found with my digicam that sometimes the colors are better with the flash and sometimes better without (actually more often than with the flash) . . . so you might well consider taking "double shots" (with and w/o flash) because there is no film wasted.

    -- Jeff

    1. I have had no luck with flash. I do take anywhere up to 5 pictures for every one I post.

  3. Yes think 'flash' tends to turn the pictures yellowish

  4. Ross - I am trying to avoid sounding as though I think I know what I'm talking about here, since I don't - I think the orange wash effect just comes from the higher proportion of red light in conventional electric light. Flash will whiten it up, but unless you've got some kind of indirect flash unit which bounces the light off the ceiling you'll get irritating shadows, and that silly effect where items near the camera glare unnaturally and the far corners are still gloomy. If you have a tripod you can try increasing the exposure time a little for artificial light.

    Best option might be one of those special photographers' daylight bulbs. These things are a bit severe for general illumination during a battle (for example), and also they have a limited life, but having one in a tall lamp stand so you can switch it on just for pics would probably make a big difference. My overhead daylight bulb has died now, but I have a daylight-type hobby lamp which I use for figure painting, and that is a similar idea, though it is a bit directional. I also have a therapeutic light box for SAD problems which works well for photography as well, though these tend to be a bit pricey if you don't fancy its main function.

    If, of course, your orange pics were taken in daylight then you can consign this entire comment to the appropriate bucket!

    I must say it never occurred to me that you have problems with photos - they always look very good to me.


    1. Well many of them were taken during daylight hours and it does effect the lighting in the room but its indirect and weak so the lighting is mostly inadequate electric, a mix of CFL and conventional. My dream is a well lit room one day, after I replace the 80 year old wiring.

      What's bothering me is my inability to predict why 2 pictures taken within minutes of each other are so different. I may have a clue though, sometimes the white window frame is in the picture before cropping and that may help the camera figure out the cast. Time to experiment.

      Thanks for the compliment though, its all about being prolific and persistent when shooting and picky when posting..

  5. Ross,
    I have had the same problems with digital cameras and inconsistent coloration. I determined that the problem is that there is a computer in every digital camera, and all computers are Spawns of Satan (especially the one I am typing on now). ;oP```
    Good luck with your pics.

  6. I had this problem with my last camera (Fuji Finepix) and convinced myself that it was the new 'eco' bulb in my anglepoise, but it turned out the CCD (onboard computer) was on the way out.

    Also whether you have the macro setting on (little tulip bulb) seems to have an effect and there are two vertions - the auto one, usually the default one you turn on and off as you are taking shots and another 'full' macro setting in the 'mode' menu, which will take macro shots without flash.

    Don't know if any of that helps; I'm with you on the "Love it - Hate it" thing, when it works modern technology is superb, when it doesn't, it's scrap!

    1. I was trying to think of what changed between shots. I do sometimes toggle macro on and off because the one is sharper for the main character while the other has better depth of field. Must attempt to co-relate with the colour shift. Thanks

  7. That yellowing problem is definitely a PITA.. I get it too, and like you I use software to counteract it (Picasa3 in my case)... I've always thought it was to do with the amount of ambient light... like you I never use flash, I use a tripod to make sure the camera is still, but I've noticed that depending on the angle of the camera when taking the picture sometimes I get yellow sometimes I don't... I've just assumed it effects the amount of light to the lens if the camera is pointing more down... if you know what I mean.... :o)

    I do like the look of your games though....

  8. Thanks Steve,

    I was thinking the low angle shots were less prone but then I noticed that I had 2 from the same angle and one had the yellow cast.

    I'm using Picassa 3 as well but just started playing with more than the most basic tweets.

    Based on some belated googling, it might have to do with the amount of white or neutral colours in the picture. One day, I'll make notes while I shoot!