Whoops! – What’s In A Flame? ☆

Sometimes when you’re out on a shoot, things are chaotic and you mess something up in a way that’s not easy to fix. Check out the outdoor and locker room scenes in the What’s In A Flame? episode. They look kinda weird, right? But in a way that makes some sense: it maybe looks like we were trying to make it look like faded tape from an old TV show.

Can you guess why they look that way? The answer is…

… that we forgot to white balance before we shot.

White balancing usually means looking for a little icon like this:

One of the icons a camera will use to mean "white balance."

It’s a built-in tool on the camera which helps you make anything that looks white-colored to your eye actually show up as white in what you are shooting. It evens out other colors, too.

The way to do it is point your camera at something that is pure white colored, like a piece of blank paper, then run the white balance function. We usually carry an index card in our camera bags to be sure we have something to use, but you can sometimes use a wall or your friend’s tee-shirt.

Fortunately, it made sense to make the film look aged, so we went with this un-balanced footage. We even re-shot the part where Weena said “I hate you!” to the computer screen, and messed up the white balance in that shot to match.

We might not have been so lucky, though. It would have been harder to make it look “normal,” if we had wanted to do that.

Try it yourself: Shoot something with the white balance off (one way is to white balance on something yellow, pink, or another light color), bring it into your editing program, and try doing color correction. What are the results? What else could you do if you forgot to white balance?