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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Macro Talk 
Thread started 12 Oct 2011 (Wednesday) 07:41
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Background and Macro

3 posts
Joined Oct 2011
Oct 12, 2011 07:41 |  #1

Hi There,

Just wondering if anyone can help. I am no photographer but have purchased an olympus Optical zoom camera with enhanced macro to take pictures for my website which consists of very small objects. I can get the picture perfect and detailed but it changes the background colour depending on what colour the object is.
So I have the background set up as a pale blue if the object is white it seems to adjust the background darker, and lightens it for black. Is this down to a setting on the camera?
I want the background all the same.
Have tried in natural light and with a Light box same results. i am sure you guys will tell me its something silly?

Thanks in Advance

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Senior Member
488 posts
Joined Jun 2011
Location: west sussex, UK
Oct 12, 2011 08:20 |  #2

Hi, im not too sure about this and im sure someone will give a nicely detailed answer but im wondering if its something to do with white ballance, try setting a manual or custom white ballance, im thinking this might stop the colour shift.


3 posts
Joined Oct 2011
Oct 12, 2011 08:42 as a reply to  @ dubstylz's post |  #3

Thanks for your help , have tried all the wb settings and it seems to adjust the background on all of them, so very odd. Perhaps I need to take up flower arranging :(

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Oct 12, 2011 21:28 as a reply to  @ wendyandrob's post |  #4

posting examples would help a lot.

Macro Photo-Lord of the Year 2006
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Oct 13, 2011 03:13 |  #5

Suspect this may just be down to exposure levels. Cameras expect a picture to average out as an 18% greyscale with macro you often get very large areas of either subject or background or both that are either brighter or darker than 18% greyscale. In these circumstances the camera will underexpose a bright one and overexpose a dark one. So when you are taking the pics the easiest thing to do is to adjust the exposure compensation (EC) assuming your camera has this function. You raise the EC with bright pictures and lower the EC with dark ones.
If you can find EC on your camera, set up one of your pale subjects/backgrounds as in the first example and try adding from + .66 to +1.33 EC or the reverse with a dark background eg -.66EC
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3 posts
Joined Oct 2011
Oct 13, 2011 06:21 as a reply to  @ LordV's post |  #6

Cant figure out how to get examples up it asks for a URL. (I am blond!)
I am going to mess with exposures and see if that makes a difference, your all so helpful :)

Senior Member
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Location: Denver
Oct 13, 2011 09:51 |  #7

I think if you're photographing in a controlled environment with the same lighting each time, the best method is to find the correct exposure for that setting, then set the camera to manual with those same shutter and f-stop values. Then you can change your background and subjects to your hearts content. If it is not a controlled environment and you need the camera to determine exposure for you each time, then get a good feel for setting the right amount of exposure compensation. Remember it's counter-intuitive. You want brighter for white objects, and darker for black ones.

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Lester ­ Wareham
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Oct 14, 2011 12:58 |  #8

Are you using auto white balance?, that can cause that sort of effect. Try setting the white balance to daylight or flash as appropriate if so.

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Background and Macro
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