Friday Photo Tip: White Balance
by Laura Hicks -  6/21/2013

Have you ever looked at one of your images and thought, "Wow! This picture looks blue"? Or, more commonly, "My image looks a bit yellow. That's not what I saw when I looked through the viewfinder"? If so, you are not alone.

The problem with these images is that they were not properly white balanced. Although cameras generally do a good job of auto white balancing the images in-camera (before you ever see them), sometimes you will need to make some adjustments yourself.

Most cameras have an option to adjust their white balance (WB). White balance refers to the adjustment of color temperature in your image. Adjusting the color temperature or white balance in your camera will change the color cast of your image. Here is a breakdown of the white balance settings:

Below is a sample of white balance settings done inside near a window with indirect sunlight.


Auto                                                                     Tungsten


Fluorescent                                                         Sunny


Flash                                                                  Cloudy


My main piece of advice with changing your white balance is to do it carefully and after much practice. Auto white balance has come a long way since the beginning of digital cameras and in most situations you will most likely not need to change it. But when you do you will be glad you have an understanding of color temperatures. As always, have a great weekend and go grab that shot!