For Week 28 of professional pet photography blog circle Project 52 we’re back in the groove with another lesson from “The Visual Toolbox: 60 Lessons for Stronger Photographers” by David DuChemin. Our task this week was to play with white balance to alter the mood of our images. White balance is the color of the light in the image and depending on how you set it, it can create a warmer or cooler image. As duChemin says “Given how powerfully we respond to color, it should be no surprise that we respond emotionally to the color of light.” 

Typically, because I shoot RAW images, I shoot with my white balance set to auto, because I make my adjustments in my post-processing. For this week, we were tasked with changing the white balance settings either in camera or in post. Since I was shooting in a controlled environment with flash I decided to make my white balance adjustments in camera. Since I made my white balance adjustments in camera, I also am showing unedited images other than to crop them a bit and add my watermark.

Here is an unedited image with white balance set to AUTO.

Next, the white balance is set to INCANDESCENT. This provides a very obviously blue color cast and sets a completely different mood than the image above taken on auto-white balance.

Next was the FLUORESCENT white balance setting. This also has a somewhat blue color tone, but not as much as in the incandescent setting.

I then changed the white balance to SUNLIGHT.

Then I adjusted the white balance to FLASH, which is a pretty good rendition of the colors of the scene, as I was shooting with flash.

Next up was the white balance setting of CLOUDY.

And finally, the white balance setting of SHADE, adds a little warmth to the image.

Finally, I decided to put final edits on the image taken with auto white balance.

Now for more white balance moods, head over to see what About a Dog Photography in St. Cloud, MN, is feeling; then head around the rest of the blog circle until you end up back here.

If you would like to book a custom pet portrait session in your home or other favorite location, use the hot pink “BOOK NOW” button to the right of this post (at the bottom or your screen on mobile), send us an email to suzi [at], or give us a call at 513-288-1650 in the Greater Cincinnati area or at 650-382-3242 in the San Francisco Bay Area.

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