In Praise Of Dull Days

on October 25, 2015

Yesterday was a dull day. I am delighted to say. It was full of imperialist mayhem and murder but enjoyable withal.

You see, the bane of the outdoor event photographer - the sun - was veiled for the better part of the morning by a cover of clouds. Not an unusual thing but the timing of this sort of meteorological assistance is never sure - you go to events prepared for battle.

Camera Electronic sells the goodies to fight the sun. Diffuser screens for portraitists, portable speed lights for fill flash, and battery-powered strobe sets for the more well-to-do. ( Who want to carry more break-the-back stuff on their treks...). We deploy the light to fight the light and most times succeed - if not exactly overpowering the sun, at least mitigating the worst of the contrast.

Sort of a case of Saul vs Sol...

Well, yesterday had a high scrim of cloud that turned into a cover of cloud that turned into rain. There was little need for fill flash, though in some cases it made a nice gleam off the arms and armour. But there was one curious feature - the little cloud symbol for the WB that was meant to set the camera for cloudy conditions certainly worked but worked too well - the pictures made using it warmed up just that little bit too much. They had to be pulled back 800º k in the final computer work to render the scenes in a natural sense.

At the same time I noted that another friend using a different camera set to AUTO WB had little of this problem. I think I was trying to be too clever and Professional with a capital P.

Moral? Set the WB with ºK by all means but do a little investigation beforehand as to the best temperature. Now I know for my camera. What is best for yours?