Picture Perfect: White Balance

Between my blog and my Storenvy shop, I take hundreds of pictures of my craft projects and products every month. I am continually looking for ways to improve my own photos because I know that quality photos attract customers and help me tell my crafting story.

You don't need to be a professional photographer, or have a fancy camera, to take decent pictures. There are a few simple things that anyone can do with a basic digital point and shoot camera. For example, taking your camera off of the "auto" setting and experimenting with different features, especially the white balance, can have a huge impact on your photos.

I adjust the white balance on my camera every time I shoot a series of photos. If you have ever noticed that your photos have a yellowish or bluish hue, your camera's white balance setting is probably to blame.

Here's how to show your product's true colors.


Most newer cameras have at least five white balance settings besides auto. They are sunny, cloudy, tungsten, fluorescent and daylight fluorescent.

Since a picture is worth a thousand words, let me show you how the white balance settings can change a photo. We'll start with a roll up artists case that I just made for my daughter. I took this picture inside with a white background and natural lighting from a window in the room. All of my camera settings remained the same except for the white balance. From left to right, my white balance settings were sunny, cloudy, tungsten, fluorescent, daylight fluorescent.

Learn how adjusting the white balance on your camera can impact your product photos
Click on the photo strip for a larger view

In this example the fluorescent setting provided a photo where the colors appear closest to the actual item color.

Now let's go outside and look at the fairy garden by my front door. Again, the only thing I adjusted in each shot is the white balance setting.

Learn how adjusting the white balance on your camera can impact your product photos
Click on the photo strip for a larger view

Even though I was taking the picture in the shade, the sunny setting produced the best results.

Here are a couple more examples, a hibiscus in my backyard

Learn how adjusting the white balance on your camera can impact your product photos
Click on the photo strip for a larger view

and one of the paintings hanging in my studio.

Learn how adjusting the white balance on your camera can impact your product photos
Click on the photo strip for a larger view

As you can see, the appropriate white balance setting depends greatly on your lighting conditions.

Don't be afraid to switch off the auto setting on your camera. It only takes a few minutes to experiment and see which white balance setting works best for your situation.

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The Chilly Dog: Picture Perfect: White Balance
Picture Perfect: White Balance
You don't need to be a professional photographer, or have a fancy camera, to take decent pictures. There are a few simple things that anyone can do with a basic digital point and shoot camera.
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The Chilly Dog
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