Saturday, May 18

Color Photography is one of the more complicated areas of a photographers work, specifically because of the wide ranges of light sources you may encounter at any point in time. Generally, light sources are measured by color temperature, with most normal light bulbs producing light at about 2500 degrees Kelvin, which produces a yellow/red cast to a photo. Daylight normally has a color temperature of about 5500K.

Most films you buy are balanced to produce accurate color in daylight. Because of this, anytime you have to take pictures with artificial light you have to compensate. You can do this in several ways. You can use a filter on your camera, but this reduces your shutter speed, and unless the light sources you are working with are very bright, you run the risk of blurry photos.

Most professional photographers, if they can, will use specifically designed lamps instead, providing an artificial light source with a color temperature closer to the 5000K – 5500K range that daylight falls into. The cheapest way to accomplish this is to buy daylight balanced florescent bulbs. There is a danger with this though, because depending on the bulb, florescent light can sometimes cast green. You can find florescent bulbs that don’t, but i think they tend to be more expensive.