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Can't get that turquoise water right!

Discussion in 'Cameras and Photography' started by Kahoona, Dec 6, 2018.

  1. Kahoona

    Kahoona Super Member

    Messages:
    2,969
    Location:
    Big Pine Key, Conch Republic
    Hi
    Probably a simple question but I can't figure it out! The water in my pictures comes out blue but our water is pale Turquoise on a good day. I live on Big Pine Key, just South of Florida. When the conditions are right the ocean can become a pale blue Turquoise. Tuesday I was out and in about 50 feet of water, mostly over a sandy bottom and the color was perfect. I went snorkeling in 100ft of visibility and everything was immersed in that wonderful color. It is the color we think of as ocean here. My underwater camera is inexpensive and contains an Intova IC 600. I have tried tweaking the colors with Photoshop CS6 and ACDSee both but that always alters the colors on other ways.

    Here is the surface. It looks nice but not like the color in reality. I have had no success making the water look like it really does without the boat and sky being very off. PICT0006.JPG
    https://www.examples.com/business/color-chart.html

    It should look almost as blue as like 2648 Blue on this chart.
    https://www.examples.com/business/color-chart.html

    Any suggestions would be appreciated. I can correct for color at depth just fine but it is that surface color that is hard. Might have to do with reflection or angle too. Could be that camera.
     

     

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  2. timofred

    timofred I'm just a garbage man...

    Messages:
    2,521
    Location:
    Port Macquarie,NSW,Oz
    Are you using auto white balance ?
    If so, turn it to sun, ☀

    A polarizing filter might help.
     
  3. old_tv_nut

    old_tv_nut See Yourself on Color TV! Subscriber

    Messages:
    15,438
    Location:
    Sahuarita
    Agree on setting white balance to sun (daylight).
    What kind of monitor are you viewing on?
     
  4. old_tv_nut

    old_tv_nut See Yourself on Color TV! Subscriber

    Messages:
    15,438
    Location:
    Sahuarita
    I opened it in Photoshop and I notice that it is underexposed - probably due to the automatic exposure seeing all that sky area. If you open it in Photoshop, look at the histogram and you will see that it has significant content only up to mid gray. Add a levels adjustment layer and pull the right arrow marker (whites) to the left some. (You'll know you're moving the correct control because the whole picture will get brighter and more colorful. If it gets darker, you 're moving the wrong control.) Is that better to you? It looks better to me.

    sea pic with levels raised.jpg
     
  5. onepixel

    onepixel .

    Messages:
    34,766
    Location:
    Maui
    Was it a sunny day and what time of day? The camera is probably metering to much light and over compensating the exposure.

    PICT0006.jpg
     
  6. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,310
    Location:
    MI, US
    I agree with the polarizer suggestion--all that glare on the water will impede you from seeing the actual color beneath it.

    Here is the water at the top of Old Mission Peninsula (at the lighthouse):

    IMG_20180707_132741.jpg

    Here it is through a polarizer:

    IMG_20180707_132736-01.jpeg

    One thing to look for in the top photo is the reflection of the sky. In the bottom photo, you can more easily see the sand.

    I had to color-correct the bottom photo, however, due to the type of polarizer I used...

    I took this on my Pixel XL, and used my Ray Ban sunglasses with the polarized lenses as the polarizer. The amber tint I corrected was from the lenses. You will notice the effect as you rotate the "polarizer" and watch the glare disappear.
     

     

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  7. mhedges

    mhedges Super Member

    Messages:
    2,443
    Location:
    Greensboro NC
    Are you shooting in RAW or JPG? I would suggest shooting in raw till you get the white balance figured out.
     
    cratz2 likes this.
  8. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,310
    Location:
    MI, US
    I'm thinking it's not worth fighting the color balance yet, since what I'm seeing in the photo is the sky reflecting off of the water. I'm not seeing within the water, in other words. So the exposure is going to key in on the sky, and the reflection of the sky on the water, as is the auto white balance. Compare and concentrate on the middle third of both photos I posted above. The top photo reflects the sky; the bottom photo shows deep within the water.

    I'd get rid of the reflection with a polarizer before attempting anything else. (The only caveat is that a circular polarizer only works on lenses up to a certain focal length; if you go to wider angle lenses, there is a lot of vignetting near the top of the photo where the polarizer is over-darkening the corners.) It's amazing, too, how bodies of water "darken" when first using a polarizer, and rotating it into place. It also takes the glare and reflections off of everything else, like rocks, shiny leaves, even storefront windows, and it will let the objects show their true colors. It will also enrich the blue sky in a photo. They are inexpensive enough today that I carry a few different sizes in my camera bag.

    Along with that, I would concentrate on lighting, and the angle of the camera. A lens pointed down at the water will show more beneath it than aiming across the water, if that makes sense. And the sun being overhead, vs. nearer the horizon, will also help illuminate the depths of the water.
     
    cratz2 likes this.
  9. Hobie1dog

    Hobie1dog Super Member

    Messages:
    1,748
    Location:
    NC
    You looking for this color Loblolly-2-O.jpg
     
    cratz2 likes this.
  10. cratz2

    cratz2 Addicted Member

    Messages:
    5,544
    Location:
    Indy, IN
    That particular color AND that particular spot!

    :beerchug:
     

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