We're Erica + Jon, professional photographers, Mr + Mrs and Mom + Dad. We like to share insights into our industry, behind the scenes and stories about our life and chips + salsa obsession.
“How do you get perfect skin tones in your images?!” It’s the question we get most often from other photographers struggling like we once did to achieve creamy, real-to-life skin tones in their images. We’ve even had a client look at our images and say, “I love the filter you put on your photos!” That’s when we explained that we don’t edit with filters or presets. We told her we’ve been taught and have trained ourselves to shoot our style correct in camera.
But it wasn’t always that way…
We used to struggle to achieve the color tones we were after in our images. We’d come home from a session feeling high from the amazing experience we just had with a client only to have all of those feelings dashed away when we uploaded images for post-processing. It was the worst feeling. Our images would be too orange or too green/blue and no matter what we did they wouldn’t be consistent. We saw other photographers posting photos with soft, creamy skin tones but ours just looked off. We knew there had to be a better way to solve the problem besides playing with white balance sliders for hours on end in post-processing.
Then we were introduced to a tool that literally transformed our photography business. Yes, you read that right…not just our images, but our entire photography business! The ExpoDisc is a small tool, about the size of a camera lens cap, and it feeds your camera the information it needs to capture perfect white balance!
Sound too good to be true? Let us explain.
Your camera’s Auto-White Balance setting allows the camera’s internal light meter to measure the color temperature on your subject and adjust accordingly. There’s one huge problem with this system, however. The color temperature can change constantly based on where your focal point is centered. Your in-camera Auto-White Balance is inconsistent because it is constantly adjusting based on the particular reading it calculates for each image.
The ExpoDisc works by feeding your camera what it needs – a grey image of 18% light transmission which it then interprets to set a custom white balance for the following images. Instead of letting the camera decide the settings, you tell the camera what you want, based on the science behind the ExpoDisc.
Unless you shoot in Auto, you’re already used to telling you’re camera the settings you’d like based on the photo you are taking. You set aperture, ISO and shutter speed intentionally to create the photograph you want. The ExpoDisc is the tool that allows you to also set the white balance intentionally for that image!
So the secret is out. We aren’t Lightroom unicorns with an uncanny ability to perfectly filter every photo we produce. We don’t have magical pixie dust we sprinkle on our cameras before we shoot. And we certainly don’t just rely on good luck. It’s an intentional decision we make for every shoot to take control of our white balance and get those beautiful skin tones! Using the ExpoDisc transformed our photography business not just because of the ease of achieving perfect white balance, but because of the confidence it gave us on location to show client’s back of camera images, the peace it gave us knowing our images would look great in post-production, and the time savings it brought us that allows us to focus on other important areas of running our business.
Are you sick of editing skin tones endlessly in Lightroom? Done with feeling discouraged because you can’t get the color balance you are after? Then do something about it!
We’ve partnered with the makers of the ExpoDisc to create a step by step video on how and why to use the ExpoDisc! That’s right! Consider us your personal ExpoDisc white balance coaches! In the video, we talk about traditional white balance tools, how the ExpoDisc works and how to use the ExpoDisc!
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