In the Color Editor’s Basic Tool tab you’ll find a simple interface allowing you to do gentle but still quite effective color adjustments on your image.
Do radical color correction
In the Advanced Color Tab you have a much more powerful tool with more options – allowing you to do very specific color correction. For both the Basic and the Advanced Tool you can change a color in Hue, Saturation and Lightness, but in the Advanced Tool you can also make very narrow color selections and you are not restricted to work on only 6 colors as in the Basic Tool.
With the Advanced Color Tool you can really do radical color changes like turning a green able into a blue apple. So if you want to be creative with colors this is the tool you want to get to know.
Example: Changing an apple into any color
I will now show how I can change the sliced apple into any color by using the Advanced Tool in the Color Editor.
Setting the White Balance:
When doing color adjustments in the Color Editor it is important to adjust your White Balance first as all colors are defined from the White Balance. If you start doing color adjustments and then later change your White Balance, you risk having to redo all your corrections.
I start by making sure that the white plate is as neutral as possible. I pick the white balance from the edge of the plate using the white balance picker. I do this to make sure that the plate itself does not have any color. There will only be some green reflections near the apple giving a little greenish tint.
Masking the Apples:
As the brown color on the knife and the yellow/green color of the apple are close to each other on the color circle, I will make a mask that only contains the apple and the greenish reflection on the plate. I use the “+” to create a new adjustments layer. I make sure to use hardness 0 to ensure that my changes will blend as smoothly as possible into the background layer. The more drastic changes you make, the more important is it to use hardness 0.
Changing the Color:
In the Advanced tab of the Color Editor I select the Advanced Color Picker. I pick the color of the apple and the selected color now shows up in the list below the adjustments sliders. I now change the hue all the way to -30. You will notice that it doesn’t change the hue that much as the tool is optimized to do realistic color changes. So in order to change the hue from green to red I will have to add more Color picks on the apple.
For each of the color picks I have made I change the hue all the way. Once I am near my desired color, I use both Hue, Saturation and Lightness to achive the desired color.
In this example I have done a really drastic color change. I have had control of my colors and color transition as I have only the green color in my mask. But if you do your own creative color changes, you also have to make sure that your color transitions still look good. You may have to add more adjustments layers to achieve you goal.
All the best,
The Image Quality Professor
The digital pioneer, Niels V. Knudsen, is Phase One’s Image Quality Professor and founder of the IQP blog. Moreover, he is responsible for breakthrough advancements in image quality both in Phase One’s medium format camera systems and in Capture One Pro.