What Did I Do To My Camera?

Olympus SP-500 UZ
Like most digital cameras, the SP-500 has a bewildering variety of menu options. I was messing with them a couple weeks ago, and apparently tweaked something without noticing. Took a series of outdoor shots last weekend, and found they all had a uniform bluish cast, and looked overexposed. The bluing was severe enough that Photoshop (curves or color balance) could not correct. It’s as if the red and green channels were hardly there. A shot of a red book in front of a yellow backdrop on green grass in full sun, came out looking like B&W with a blue tint. :confused:
I fixed the problem by resetting the camera to its default state, it’s a menu option, but that left me with no idea what I’d done to mess it up.
Can White Balance cause an effect like that, or was it something else?

Does it have an option to shoot at night? My cameraphone (hardly the same quality, but I digress) has this option… I’ve noticed that pics taken in this mode during the day seem to be washed out and blue-tinted. I’ve never actually used to take pictures at night, oddly enough… I’ll have to try it. :slight_smile:

Sounds like you changed the white balance for expected light source. If outdoor shots look blue, I’m betting you set it for “tungsten”, the setting used indoors under incandescent lights without a flash. Look for “white balance” in your menu of settings, or perhaps “light source” Set it to “auto”.

Here is a PDF manual for the SP-500. The instructions for setting the white balance are on page 59.

Sounds like a change of white balance to me, as others have suggested. I think it is a great idea to read the manual and learn a bit more about your camera beyond the point and shoot settings.

Nope, although it will pick up the light from a TV remote. Just taking the F down, ISO up, and upping the exposure has worked for me so far. I’ve got some nice shots of Orion and the moon with the camera.

That was it. Selecting the bluest of the white point presets gave me a good imitation of those earlier funky pictures. But I’d swear I hadn’t messed with that setting earlier. Oh well. :rolleyes:

It sure is! However, the manual in this case is 188 pages long, and bits of it slip out of the mind while messing with all the menu options.

-Thanks all.

you should be able to (approximately) correct for the colour cast produced by the incorrect WB setting - I have done this before (after I got a new olympus UZ-2100). I found that you needed to severely drop the blue channel and amplify the red (and just a bit on the green) to get something that approximated natural tones. I saved a GIMP filter to do it, but had to modify it depending on the actual lighting conditions of the photo.

I leave WB on auto now :smack:


My best approximation still ended up looking like an old time color tint. Nice in it’s own way, and I may try shooting a bunch for the effect, but it wasn’t something I wanted for pix of the first little green sprouts of spring. :smack: