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Old December 29th, 2003, 10:00 PM   #1
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White Balancing on colors other than white?

Hello there,

I was wondering if anyone out there has purposely white balanced their camera to a color other than white or grey?

I was playing around with my XL1s and I white balanced to a sheet of paper that was slightly blue and the footage I shot had a nice golden hue to it.

If it's pretty common to white balance to different colors, is there a place where you can buy cards that are a certain percentage one color or another? I'm thinking about the 18% grey cards. Does anyone sell cards with something like 19%blue, 18%green, 18%red?

I'm pretty new to the whole video thing, so I appologize if I'm asking totally stupid questions. :)

Leo
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Old December 29th, 2003, 10:55 PM   #2
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And here they are!
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Old December 29th, 2003, 11:08 PM   #3
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Do a search on warm cards on this site. the pantone, cmyk and RGB receipes have all been posted. It may take some digging.

You could always white balance through a1/4 CTB gel swatch.
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Old December 30th, 2003, 12:05 AM   #4
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Wow!

Thanks for the fast replies!
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Old December 30th, 2003, 11:25 AM   #5
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As well as balancing through gel swatches or coloured cards and paper etc, I use DSC Labs White'nWarm cards - similar to the ones Charles mentioned.

Best,
Helen
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Old December 31st, 2003, 03:00 PM   #6
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Remember that when you color your footage in the camera, you are making a somewhat permanent choice. Cannot change your mind later. You can do the same thing in post.
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Old December 31st, 2003, 03:55 PM   #7
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Mike, I agree that the choice is permanent when off-white balancing, but the results can be more pleasing than using post-filters. Don't get me wrong, I use After Effects all the time for really subtle to way-out post-processing. It seems that really off-balancing, like say through a magenta or straw gel, can create much subtler looks than post-filtering. Plus, you get the added bonus of being able to monitor your "filtration" on set. That way, if certain elements like costume or makeup don't work with a particular color balance, you know it right away. I agree that it can be pretty unnerving to commit to an irreversable choice, but film DP's shoot through filters all the time. If you're comfortable with that artistic choice, I say go for it!
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Old December 31st, 2003, 05:36 PM   #8
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If you just include the off-color card in a brief scene, then you can achieve the same color balance in post as in the camera. White balance on that card in Post. Same principle, same method.

You can always check balance on-location if you wish then revert to the more true color.

I don't know about the more extreme effects. I still think it unlikely one cannot emulate the effects in post as in-camera. Might be difficult, mind you.

DP's make choices and have to live with them because of the nature of the film process. They wouldn't do so if they didn't have too. Unless they want to remove choice from the hands of the Editor.
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