Vibrant Color? How do you get that?

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by BeCaptivated, Aug 24, 2007.

  1. BeCaptivated

    BeCaptivated TPF Noob!

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    I notice that my photos (I'm an amateur) are dull making the pictures look flat, but a professional has vibrant pictures (color) which make the photo almost look 3-D. How is that done? Is it a filter or PS or just experience?
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Proper exposure and good light will help, along with things like a polarizer filter (outdoors)...but yes, post processing has a lot to do with it as well.
     
  3. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

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    It is a combination of all three and then some. As your work develops you will have a better understanding of the all powerful colour. Not like you can flick a switch and the colour will be amazing. Takes time and knowledge.

    Love & Bass
     
  4. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    Experience, knowing what to look for, and knowing how to do it.
     
  5. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Professional photos don't always have vibrant colors... it is all depends on the overall goal the photographer is attempting to achieve.

    First and foremost... proper exposure (as Mike said). The only way to take full advantage of the negative or sensor has to offer is via proper exposure and lighting.

    From the film days, I was used to somewhat controlling the vibrant (or subdued) colors via the use of different films. This lead to a some dissappointment when digital became affordable and attainable. It was one of the first reasons why many photographers didn't take digital cameras seriously.

    Times have changed and many have now learned that digital cameras also depend on post-pro (photoshop) work to pull the full potential from their captures. In my opinion, more so with digital than with film. Nothing wrong with that route as it gives the photographer more control over their final image.

    So the short answer is simply experience... Color is controlled by exposure, lighting, composition, post-pro.. and many other things. Learning exposure and lighting is a good place to start (and a topic you will continue to learn).

    Next, I'd say learn a few techniques in photoshop. Benjikan has posted a photoshop workflow that would interest you..

    http://www.thephotoforum.com/forum/showthread.php?t=74450
     
  6. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    the position and height of the sun are also super important. High/strong sun ugh.
    Directly towards sun completely bad.
    Directly away semi-bad.
    low slanting sun from the sides - wonderful
     
  7. Orrin

    Orrin No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    All of the above is good advice, but you did not say whether you
    were using slides or prints.
    For Slides, a proper exposure on a high saturation film like Velvia is
    really all you need.
    For Prints, you have to consider the paper and the printing process.
    I have found that the best saturation is obtained when the print is
    made on to real photochromic paper by a Fuji Frontier or similar
    machine rather than home inkjet!
     
  8. gmarquez

    gmarquez TPF Noob!

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    Are you shooting film (negative or slide), or digital? What camera are you using? Last but not least, can you post an example? This information can help people narrow down what is going "wrong".
     
  9. ErinB

    ErinB TPF Noob!

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    If you are shooting film, there are types available that have different saturation levels. Try Fuji 160C for print film (NOT good for people!) or Fuji Velvia 50 for slide film. Prefer a faster ISO? Try Fuji 400X for slide, or 400H for print. You can also get a whole slew of filters that work with film or digital, depending on how you want the image to look. Polarizing filters intensify your color and cut back on glare/reflection, and if you have an autofocus system, be sure to get a circular polarizer (the linear will affect your meter).
    If you're shooting digital, look in the camera menu for a picture style setting. There generally is one called "vivid" for color enhancement.
    A lot of this can also be done in Photoshop, upping your saturation levels and modifying certain color settings. In my opinion, it's better to shoot the way you want it to turn out, rather than post-production.
     
  10. sothoth

    sothoth TPF Noob!

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    If you're using digital, you can also increase color saturation on the camera. Or you can shoot in RAW mode and increase color saturation after the fact. I prefer to do it after shooting (on the RAW image) but that's just me.
     
  11. Snyder

    Snyder TPF Noob!

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    I use in camera settings then take it in post production for some fine tuning like curves and bam thats it.
    [​IMG]
     
  12. sothoth

    sothoth TPF Noob!

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    Cool photo... were you parachuting by the aircraft or were you up in a jet too? :)
     

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