Skip to toolbar

question about backdrop color

Forums Forums Get Technical Tips & Tricks question about backdrop color

Viewing 9 posts - 1 through 9 (of 9 total)
  • Author
  • #1429

    I work in a doctor’s office as the IT guy. Occasionally our hand doctor wants me to photograph patients hands for their medical record.

    He is not happy with how the skin colors look most of the photos I take with my XTi. He didn’t like the color of the skin with any other camera I’ve used, either.

    Over the last 3 years we’ve gone from a crappy handheld Sony to my Canon Powershot G1 and now to my XTi.

    We usually put a blue or green hand towel under their hands but, as I said, it doesn’t look very good.

    Now, to my question, what the hell color background should I shoot against?


    I’d say black, neutral grey, or perhaps off-white.


    I’d say black, neutral grey, or perhaps off-white.

    I can do that.

    In the hand room, they have a very bright, directional halogen light in the ceiling. Is this contributing to the discolored look?

    I’ve set my camera’s to auto and I use the build in flash to eliminate shadows. AWB = auto.


    Do you do any work on the photos using photoshop or gimp after you take the shot. If not you could try going to levels in photoshop/gimp which can help to correct the colors, the auto button usually does a pretty good job of this for you too.


    Using the built in flash (with a color temperature of perhaps 6000? K) and the halogen at maybe 3400? K is the classic mixed-lighting scenario. The easiest solution if you feel you MUST use flash is to filter the flash with an warming filter to bring it closer to the halogen. Ideally you would get an ambient WB using something like an ExpoDisk and shoot without flash. I would also second getting a neutral background prop.


    I do often use photoshop’s auto-levels and auto-color. My biggest problem there is that I’m color blind.

    Don’t ask me why I have this task. As I said, I’m the IT guy.


    If it’s just hands only, you might be able to talk him into springing for a tiny, foolproof, light box. They’re shockingly cheap, easy to store, and sounds like it would solve all of the problems in one fell swoop (because then you could use a custom white balance that would be easily reproducible for the follow up shots.)
    *I might be wrong about this*

    Plus, it’s always fun to tell people to put their hands in the box, and, when they say it’s hot, start reciting lines from the Gom Jabbar part of Dune.
    *I am definitely right about this*


    You could get a white balance card (google ‘whibal’) and incorporate that into your workflow.

    ‘Mofo’s suggestion of a light box seems like a good idea – you could easily line a cardboard box with black felt.

    A google image search for “hand model” shows a lot of black, white and gray backgrounds.


    Thanks folks, great ideas all around.

Viewing 9 posts - 1 through 9 (of 9 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.