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Hour 6. Improving Photos > Color and Contrast Correction with Fireworks

Color and Contrast Correction with Fireworks

Just because an image is digital does not mean that it is well exposed or color accurate. If an image was taken with a digital camera, it will almost certainly need some sort of correction. If the image originated on photographic film, there are even more steps in the process that could affect the eventual color balance and contrast: the time, temperature, and chemicals used to develop the film; the exposure and development of the print; and the settings used when the film or print was scanned.

Cameras and scanners will make predictable decisions about how an image should be exposed, but that doesn’t mean they are always the correct ones. When shooting a subject that is backlit, the camera will average the very light areas with the very dark areas to determine the appropriate shutter speed and aperture. This means that the dark areas will be underexposed and the light areas will be overexposed, because the average is somewhere in the middle. The same goes for developing film; much of the process is done by a machine that uses similar methods to determine how an image should be developed and printed.


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