I was retouching some photos for the photography website when I noticed how a very quick adjustment made a huge difference to the overall tonality of the shot I was working on: gamma correction.
After giving it some thought, it makes sense.
Okay, to start I should probably give a quick explanation of gamma. Gamma is essentially how something or someone sees mid tones relative to black and white. Our eyes adapt to mid tones in logarithmically as does film. Digital sensors however respond to mid tones linearly. Some cameras compensate for this phenomena to make images look a little more natural, but often our eyes are used to seeing a linear tone curve on screen anyway.
An easy “fix” is an exposure adjustment layer in photoshop. The bottom slider is a quick and easy gamma adjustment and can make a big difference. Bringing the slider slightly to the left, which reads as more than one (one being a linear relationship) brings up the mid tones somewhat. This creates the appearance of more compressed light tones, which can help the image look more like our eyes naturally see.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s