Exercise: Managing colour (DPP)

For this exercise find 2 or 3 images that have significant colour cast. The main purpose of the exercise is to ‘correct’ it. For most photography all that is important is that the overall colour looks reasonable and expected.

Make sure that at least one image contains a surface that is ‘known’ (that is, expected) to be grey i.e concert, steel, thick clouds, shadows on white.

Colour cast 2

This image has a  ‘dark blue/orange’ feel to it, and doesn’t look quite right. It is important to bare in mind at this stage that while colour cast should be removed generally speaking, it does boil down to the viewers interpretation. While this image doesn’t contain a definite grey area, the sky was a light blue (as seen by the human eye.)

Colour cast 2 edit

Using the techniques seen in the previous exercise I adjusted several areas and produced a much better example of what the eye saw. I set the black and white point, adjusted the midtowns and lightened the image.

Colour cast 3

I felt the above image had a slightly green/yellow cast to it, and it also contained my grey. The sky was covered in thick cloud and mist. After applying the techniques we’ve just studied I produced this edited version:

Colour cast 3 edit

I’ve darkened the mid-tones quite significantly on this image which removes the mist feel that is captured in the top image. I had very few options with the sky as it is too bright and unfortunately clipped, leaving me with little option but to leave it. However, the image does act as a pretty bang on representation of what my eye was seeing.


This image has a cyan colour cast to it, I don’t feel it needs much more correcting than cast removal. Perhaps some slight darkening of the dolphin as it does appear slightly brighter than when seen with the eye.



As a general rule i’m very aware of colour cast as it’s one of my pet peeves. I try hard to eliminate it while taking my photos – I usually find i get cast if i’m using the wrong white balance setting. It’s never fully avoidable, so learning techniques to correct it in post processing has been very helpful.

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