When you photograph most subjects, getting the colours 100% accurate isn’t usually critical, and if you shoot on Auto White Balance, nine times out 10 your digital will do a pretty good job of getting the white balance roughly right, so that whites actually look white, blacks look black, and all the colours in between look how you’d expect.
But there are some occasions when getting the colours perfect is critical – one example would be when you need to take a shot of a painting to be included in a book. The only way to ensure you have accurate colours is to get your white balance correct, and the best way to day this is to use a Colour Chart.
Colour Charts are used in conjunction with computer software like Adobe Photoshop to ensure that the white is pure white, and the black is pure black and so on. By using these colours as a reference, you can eliminate colour casts caused by different light sources.
So the next time you see a photographer with a strange paint tester kit in his hand, you’ll know that it’s not to test what colour to paint your living room, it’s actually a studio photographer’s best friend.
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