Chapter 6

Manipulating Focus and Color

IN THIS CHAPTER

Solving focus problems

Exploring autofocus features

Focusing manually

Playing with depth of field

Understanding digital color

Using white balance and other tools to adjust photo colors

Today’s digital cameras offer an abundance of focus and color features. But if you don't understand how they work, you may get unexpected (and unacceptable) results. You may want to photograph a particularly stunning rose bloom in your garden, for example. If that rose is surrounded by other plants, the camera's focusing system may lock onto one of them instead, which can cause the rose to appear blurry in the photo. Or you may discover that at the current color settings, the camera renders the rose petals as a solid blob of orange instead of accurately capturing the subtle shades of yellow and coral that actually make the flower a stunner.

To help you avoid such miscues, this chapter explains common focusing and color-related options. The early sections detail the most important aspects of focus, covering such topics as getting the best results from your camera’s autofocusing system and achieving different creative goals by manipulating depth of field (the distance over which sharp focus is maintained). The second part of the chapter dives into the color pool, explaining how to deal with off-kilter colors and offering tips about subtle color adjustments you can use to enhance different subjects. To wrap things up, I explain a feature that ...

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