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Thursday, December 2, 2021

Product Photography, Part 12: Color Correction and Presets

An important part of product photos is to ensure that the colors match real-life items.

This is part 12 of my series of helping e-commerce merchants create better product images, following “Part 1: Choosing a background”, “Part 2: Choosing a tripod”, “Part 3: Basics of artificial lighting”, “Part 4: Angles and viewpoints”, “Part 5: Selecting the camera”, “Part 6: Selecting the lens”, “Part 7: Magnification and close-up”, “Part 8: Composition essentials”, “Part 9 Part: Advanced Composition”, “Part 10: Lines as Design Elements” and “Part 11: Image Editing”.

This article will discuss color correction.

Color correction

Color correction is the process of adjusting a photo to match the actual subject. Considering the importance of accurate color matching, it is one of the most important parts of editing product photos. Unfortunately, photography courses often produce imperfect colors, requiring changes in the white balance, contrast, exposure, and saturation of the image.

White balance Refers to its hue (or shadow) in the image. Depending on the light source, white may appear more yellow or blue. Adjusting the white balance will not make your photos brighter or darker; instead, it will change the overall color to show that the human eye is associated with clean, bright white in a more balanced manner. The result is a better representation of the true color of the product.

Screenshot of YouTube video from photo TeeWin

In this YouTube video, product photographer TeeWin explains the importance of editing white balance.

Compared. Changing the contrast of the photo will make the lighter areas brighter and the darker areas brighter. Contrast affects your picture in different ways. An image that is too bright or too dark may obscure the true colors of the project, otherwise it will appear inferior, which will reduce the conversion rate.

Images of water, rocks and trees from REI.com

Changing the contrast of the photo will make the lighter areas brighter and the darker areas brighter. Picture: REI.

Exposed Similar to contrast, but it controls the overall image rather than certain areas. Increasing the exposure will make the entire photo brighter-decreasing it will have the opposite effect. Some editing programs refer to exposure as “brightness.” When adjusting these settings, first correct the exposure before turning to the contrast. This process can greatly increase the impact of photos on shoppers.

Photos of rolling hills on REI.com.

Increasing the exposure will make the entire photo brighter-decreasing it will have the opposite effect. Source: REI.

saturation. Even the best equipment may not be able to capture the true tones of certain colors. For example, it is difficult to capture and reproduce highly saturated red in modern digital cameras. Other colors are similar. The editing process can help avoid faded images.

“Saturation” and “hue” are synonymous in most image editing software. Accurate saturation is as important as contrast and exposure. To save time, correct the contrast before changing the photo saturation, because adjusting the former will also change the color. Also remember that too much saturation usually makes the image appear unreal or over-edited.

Photos from TutsPlus kayaks with different red densities.

Saturation refers to the density of a color. Note the change in red for the same kayak in this example. Picture: TutsPlus.

Filters and presets

Filters and presets in photo editing software can simplify the often onerous task. For example, VSCO includes various default filters. Try one of your images in multiple editing applications until you find a valid filter. Then apply the filter to the remaining images. The consistency of product photos is pleasing to the eye and attracts shoppers.

Using Lightroom, another photo editor, users can create their own presets or download them from others. FixThePhoto.com Provide more than 400 free Lightroom presets for e-commerce merchants. In addition, hundreds of professional photographers produce and sell Lightroom presets at reasonable prices.

As for learning resources, Creator Pretty Presets and Action has been made Rich video On Lightroom presets.Also helpful is the photographer Ann Young’s article 18 best Lightroom presets for product images.

Free or purchased presets are not guaranteed to be perfect. You may still need to adjust the white balance, contrast, exposure, and saturation according to the image.

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