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What is Colour Cast?

Have you ever wondered what is color cast, or been concerned that your filters suffer from it? Today we’ll look over what causes filter color cast and how to identify what colors are being introduced. Additionally, if you’re interested in how to remove this in Photoshop, please watch here.

Firstly, understand that every filter added to the front of your lens will introduce color cast. Therefore, as a rule of thumb, the more expensive the filters, the less color cast that’s added. However, this is not always true, be cautious and test this out in the field.

The test filters are from the Freewell Magnetic Filter System. Filters for testing:

Interested in long exposure photography? Therefore, the Freewell 6 Stop and Freewell 10 Stop will produce high-quality results compared to the Variable ND.

Freewell Magnetic Filter System

Firstly, the Fujifilm X-T3 produces a definite green tint straight out of the camera. Therefore, it’s not only filters that provide inconsistent colors. Also, it’s important to understand your photography gear inside and out for future comparisons.

Secondly, the Freewell Magnetic Polarizer produces a warmer tone. Below are comparison images captured with, and without the Freewell polariser filter. Clearly visible in the rock to the right-hand side, the blue has been reduced with an increase of overall warmth.

Additionally, a polarizer effect can only be achieved in-camera, understand how to use a polarizer by reading this or watching this. Therefore, we have to accept the colour cast in the image and learn how to remove it in post-production for the best possible results.

Finally, demonstrate the test below yourself to understand what color(s) are being introduced to the image from your filter system. Start by taking a base image without any filters, then simply add a polarizer to the front element.

Key focus points while conducting the test:

  • Shoot in aperture priority so the shutter speeds updates automatically.
  • Lockdown the white balance down, e.g. daylight or cloudy
  • Shoot on a tripod, so the composition is the same
  • Use one filter at a time, proceed by testing all the filters you own.
  • Try the same test in different conditions, e.g. sunset, indoors and forest.

How to remove Color Cast?

Paying $10 or $1000 for filters there will generally be some form of color cast introduced. Personally, the balance provided by Freewell of price, quality and function is perfect for my photography needs. However, I do not suggest any cheap filter systems, don’t by expensive lenses to destroy the quality with poor filters.

Removing color cast is extremely easy these days with multiple top quality post-production software available. As a result, I discuss in a vlog the simplest and most effective ways to remove it through Lightroom and Photoshop.

Below you can see the results with a few simple steps to combat color cast in post-production. As a result, we’re able to achieve the in-camera effect of using a polarizer, then negate the color cast from software in the editing process.

YouTube Explination of Colour Cast

Simple to remove color cast in post production.

Conclusion

In conclusion, filters are an important asset to landscape photography. However, cheap filters will degrade the quality of the image through color, sharpness and valuable time in post-production. Therefore, buy right the first time and save your money, I can highly recommend the Freewell magnetic system.

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