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Photo Editing 101: How color correction vs color grading affects your photos

color correction vs color grading

Are you looking to make your photos pop? Or maybe you just want to give them a little bit of a different look. Either way, understanding the difference between color correction and color grading is key.

Color correction is all about making sure that the colors in your photo are accurate. This means adjusting things like white balance and exposure. When it comes to product images, online retailers often use color correction to make sure their products look as accurate and true-to-life as possible. This is especially important for clothing and cosmetics, where the colors need to be spot-on.

Color grading, on the other hand, is more about creating a certain mood or feeling with your photos. For example, you might use color grading to make a product image look warmer or cooler, depending on the effect you’re going for. You can also use color grading to make an image look more vintage or even give it a futuristic feel.

So, which should you use? It really depends on what you’re going for. Pixel by Hand’s team of photo editors has a wealth of experience with both color correction and color grading, so we can help you achieve the exact look you’re going for. We’ve created this quick guide to color correction and color grading and how you can use them to improve your photos.

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What Is Color Correcting?

Color correction is the technique used to making sure that the colors in your photo are accurate. This means adjusting things like white balance and exposure. Oftentimes, color correction is used to make sure that product images look as accurate and true-to-life as possible. This is especially important for clothing and cosmetics retailers, where the colors need to be spot-on.

Color correction is a technical process that involves adjusting the levels of different colors in an image so that they appear more natural. The goal is to make sure the colors in your photo match up with the real-life colors of the scene or subject you’re photographing.

There are a few different ways to color correct an image. The most common way is to adjust the white balance. White balance is the level of warmth or coolness in an image. You can think of it as the temperature of a photo.

You can adjust the white balance in your photos to make them look warmer or cooler. For example, if you’re taking a photo of a person in front of a fire, you might want to add some warmth to the image by adjusting the white balance.

You can also adjust the exposure of an image. Exposure is term used to define how light or dark an image is. When you increase the exposure, the photo gets lighter. When you decrease the exposure, the photo gets darker.

Exposure is measured in stops. For example, if you increase the exposure by one stop, the photo will be twice as bright. If you decrease the exposure by one stop, the photo will be half as bright.

Color correction helps improve the picture’s overall look and feel to reflect what the photographer saw during the shoot. This action enables you to precisely adjust colors without causing any unexpected effects.

Also, color correcting makes your product photos more consistent. Consistency in product images is important as it helps establish brand identity and creates trust with your potential customers.

color correction

Why Color Correct Your Photos?

Color correction is important for a number of reasons:

  • It makes your photos look more accurate and true-to-life: This is important for product images, as potential customers need to be able to see what they’re buying.
  • It helps establish your brand identity: Consistent product images are key to building trust with your customers and establishing your brand identity.
  • It makes your photos look more professional: Professional-looking photos are more likely to convert potential customers into paying customers.
  • It creates trust with potential customers: As we mentioned, consistent product images help to build trust with potential customers. This is because they know what to expect from your products and are more likely to buy from you as a result.

Is Color Correction Necessary?

Color correction is not always necessary. If you’re happy with the way your photos look, then there’s no need to change them. However, if you do not, you will be missing out on a lot of advantages.

For product photography, we recommend color correcting your images as it makes them look more accurate and true-to-life. This helps potential customers see what they’re buying and builds trust between you and them.

color grading

What Is Color Grading?

Color grading is a more advanced version of color correction. While color correcting helps improve the subject’s look and feel to as “they should be,” color grading is a technique used for aesthetic purposes. It’s often used in movies and TV shows to give each scene a certain look or feel. For example, a romantic scene might have a warm color grade, while a suspenseful scene might have a cold color grade. But it can also be used for photographs. Color grading can also be used to make an image look more vintage or aged. This is often done by adding a yellow or orange tint to the image. For example, you might use color grading to make a product image look warmer or cooler, depending on the effect you’re going for. You can also use color grading to make an image look more vintage or even give it a futuristic feel. Color grading is about creating an overall mood for your photo rather than making specific colors more accurate.

    Why Color Grade Your Photos?

    Color tweaking your photographs gives them a boost of “oomph.” It has an impact on how your customers see your product images and their mood. This technique can be used for a number of reasons:
    • To create an overall mood for your photo: You might want to make your photo look warmer or cooler, depending on the mood you’re trying to create.
    • To make your photo look more vintage: Vintage photos are all the rage these days. If you want to give your image a vintage look, color grading is the way to do it.
    • To make your photo look more futuristic: If you want your photo to have a futuristic feel, color grading can help you achieve that.

    Is Color Grading Necessary?

    Color grading is not always necessary. However, if you are looking to create a specific mood for your photo or make it look more vintage or futuristic, then color grading is the way to go. In general, we recommend color grading your photos if you’re looking to achieve a specific aesthetic. Otherwise, there’s no need to change anything.
    color correction and color grading

    What is the Difference Between Color Correction and Color Grading?

    The key difference between color correction and color grading is that color correction is used to make colors more accurate, while color grading is used for aesthetic purposes.

    Color correction is all about making sure the colors in your photo look true-to-life, while color grading is about creating an overall mood for your image.

    Both techniques are important and have their own advantages. It’s up to you to decide which one is right for your needs.

    For e-commerce product images, we recommend a color correction to make sure the colors are accurate. This is essentially important for your catalog photos since these materials will only need to feature your product photos in their truest colors.

    For all other images, such as those used on social media or your website’s banner, you can get away with color grading for aesthetic purposes. These types of images are not meant to be accurate representations of your product, but rather they should be used to capture your brand’s overall aesthetic.

    So do you need to have both? Not necessarily. Generally, your photo editor should have an idea of when to use color correction and when you need color grading. At Pixel by Hand, we always provide educate our clients on what technique should be used to bring out the best in your product images.

    Simply send us your photos and our editors will discuss with you the techniques we’ll use to enhance your product images.

    Tips to Improve Color Correction and Grading

    Here are some image editing tips to help you get the most out of your color correction and grading:
    • Keep the colors consistent in all of your product photos. This will create a cohesive look for your images and make sure that your customers can easily recognize your products.
    • Use color correction to make sure the colors in your photo are accurate. This is especially important for product photos since customers need to be able to see the colors of your products accurately.
    • Use color grading to create an overall mood for your image. This technique can be used to make your photo look warmer or cooler, depending on the effect you’re going for.
    • Don’t go overboard with color correction and grading. Too much of either can make your photos look unnatural.
    If you’re not sure how to do color correction or color grading, we recommend using an online service like Pixel by Hand. We offer both color correction and color grading services so you can be sure that your photos will look their best.

    Photo Editing Services by Pixel by Hand

    If you’re looking for professional image editing services, look no further than Pixel by Hand. We offer a wide range of product photo editing services, including color correction, color grading, retouching, and more.

    Our team of experienced and skilled editors will work with you to enhance your photos and make sure they look their best. Contact us today or use the chatbox below.

     

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