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FORUMS Post Processing, Marketing & Presenting Photos The Business of Photography 
Thread started 13 Apr 2006 (Thursday) 10:08
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How to ensure WB on RAW Post-processing is spot on?

 
Mike ­ Panic
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Apr 26, 2006 17:41 as a reply to  @ post 1402751 |  #31

KennyG wrote:
You are wrong there Mike. You are making an assumption that people shoot using RAW to correct their mistakes in post-processing. The fact is most people use RAW because the in-camera processing to produce JPGs is nowhere near as good as the better of the RAW processing/conversion tools.

I prefer to process from RAW to TIF which will re-size far better than any JPG. My choice of RAW is based on producing the best possible image quality for high-gloss magazines and they prefer a 20-30mb TIF anyway. I produce JPG from the TIF for web use. I in no way regard myself as a sloppy professional.

If you want to record the accurate WB for shooting the scene in RAW, use a grey card or an Expodisk (my preferred method) and use that shot to apply WB in your conversion, by shot or by batch.

i didn't call y ou sloppy, i said that raw is making photographers sloppy at what they should be doing.

there are exceptions, like fine art work or landscapes where you need as much data as you can. i've had 2 page spreads printed in national (usa) magazines from my 10d w/ no problems. ive also recently had a fine art paper print 22.5x30" from a 1d that looks stunning. point is... you should shoot as best you can and leave your raw workflow for things which either you can't control or because you need tiff files anyway.

i work at a pro lab (i do IT there) - we are a jpg workflow. we've done the comparisons... for almost everything up to 20x30 you will be hard pressed to tell the difference between a jpg and raw file. you can doubt me if you want... but w/ several million dollars in scanners and printers, im not making these judgements from my home inkjet printer.

also - a lot of shooters shoot raw because they never had a film slr and don't fully understand exposure, exposure compensation, sunny 16 rules, etc... but do understand how image editing programs work. likewise, most of these instances will never yield a print bigger then 11x14. if a big business hires you to shoot headshots of all 400 of their employees for 5x7 prints, are you going to shoot raw? if you do... you've just added a few extra hours to your workflow. if you can do a custom white balance and use a light meter, you should have no issue shooting jpg and printing w/ almost no retouch other then glasses glare or a pimple.

i also don't agree w/ your method for custom white balance. the canon dslr will see a white card better then grey. if you shoot a white card and tell the camera this is 255 255 255 white, it knows it and you'll see a HUGE difference on the next shot you take. thats one less thing you need to do in the raw workflow. if you can do it in camera, do it. thats what you buy them for.


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Mike ­ Panic
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Apr 26, 2006 17:44 as a reply to  @ post 1426751 |  #32

Benji wrote:
For studio work my lab sells a 'Zebra Card' that you place into the first image and shoot it then when you bring the images up in Adobe Bridge you can click balance for perfect whites, blacks and very accurate color balance. It is black and white striped with an 18% gray strip right down the middle.

Benji

your not really supposed to use those that way. they are meant to be shot w/ studio lights for the most part and then check the in camera histogram, if you see 3 solid spikes to the left, center and right then chances are your exposure is on. the downside to these is they do not take into account kick lights, fill lights or reflected background lighting... nor do they do shadows or anything other then basicly your h/s portrait settings.

i have them, ive used them, but i would never use them in the way in which you mention above, you'll loose too much data doing it that way. thats like selecting image > adjust > layers and clickign the white / grey / black dropper based on what you see in the screen.


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Mike ­ Panic
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Apr 26, 2006 17:56 as a reply to  @ post 1405563 |  #33

Croasdail wrote:
Without a doubt Ken is not a sloppy professional... but just like another thread on the site, 9 out of 10 photographers did no formal white balancing to get their shoot correct. Rather they deferred to doing all the correction post shoot because they were shooting raw. Like Ken says, a simple shot of a grey card is going to give you a reference shot to make sure you are reproducing the image correctly. If you can reproduce that card on screen and in print... you know you are dialed in.

you are half correct.. yes you should be doing a custom white balance whenever you can.. but you left out

your monitor must but of good quality and you need to be doing a hardware calibration to it at least every 30 days. you also need to calibrate your printer if you print at home or have your lab make you a test print every month to every 6 months so you can hold it next to your monitor to confirm


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How to ensure WB on RAW Post-processing is spot on?
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