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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm having a bike-related photography issue that maybe some of you have had and might be able to help me with. Here goes!...

So last August I traded in my beloved Indian Springfield for my first H-D: a new 2021 Road Glide Special in Billiard Teal/Chrome. Love it. Great bike. Love the color especially, so unique. Named her "Teal Ceil" after my late mother and couldn't wait to share some pix with my family and friends.

The problem, such as it is, is that for the life of me I can NOT get her to appear as her true color in photographs! And as someone with a background in photography it's especially galling.

"'Teal Ceil?'", they'll ask. "Nice bike but looks more blue than teal. Just sayin'."

{Grrrrrr...}

LOL...I can't decide if they think I'm simply color-blind or rather a mouth-breathing idiot who doesn't know what teal is!

Just wondering if anyone else out there with a Billiard Teal bike has noticed the same issue I'm having getting the color to appear accurately in pictures. Is there something about the wavelength of that particular color that makes it particularly difficult to reproduce photographically? I've tried shooting in all sorts of lighting conditions at different times day and no amount of tweaking the color settings on my phone or laptop seem to be able to do the job without throwing off the colors of everything else in the picture.

The photo below shows Teal Ceil along with one of the few photos I've been able to find online that seems to have managed to pull off getting it right. It's from a Harley dealership so it's not the result of some professional photographer or studio, just some guy with a phone would be my guess. If anyone out there with better photography skills than Yours Truly has any advice I'd love to hear it.

Thanks for listening to me whine and stay safe out there!

-Dave
Southampton, NJ

Tire Wheel Land vehicle Vehicle Fuel tank


EDIT 3-17-22:
Thanks to some Photoshop magic by a buddy of mine at work I finally have a picture of my bike that shows the color as it actually is (below). Long live Teal Ceil!
Tire Wheel Fuel tank Land vehicle Vehicle
 

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From OP's post; "I can NOT get her to appear as her true color in photographs!"

Guys,,, the bike is the correct color, but it photographs as blue. He needs photography hints/ideas.
No no... That's a blue bike!
 

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If you have Photoshop and know how to make adjustment layers, you need to make a card that has true white, true black and true middle grey. Set up your camera on a tripod or something and take the pic that you want, then add the card near the bike and take a second pic.

Then fire up Photoshop and put the pic you want on one layer, put the pic with the card in a layer above that, and then put another layer as an adjustment layer. Then, adjust the color curves of the adjustment layer until it shows the correct colors on the card (until inspection black reads #000000, grey reads #767676, and white reads #FFFFFF). Then you simply hide the layer with the card.

If I am taking a photo by hand, usually I'll just use frame the shot wider than what I want with a white card in the crop off area if there's nothing in the shot that's already true white. That alone will help in processing color correction later. Grey card is really more for adjusting exposure and not totally necessary. But if you're going to use cards for color correction, the cards need to be next to or on the area that's the main subject of the shot you're taking.

If you have a DSLR with manual adjustment, all these steps aren't nearly as necessary. Sometimes I just do the readjustments manually by feel.

I don't really take a lot of pictures though, at least not like, glamor shots of stuff. Usually if I take pics, it's for a utility purpose. This is just what little I know about it. Digital lenses don't perceive things the same way our eyes do, and especially with cell phones, many lack manual adjustment options and they try too hard or go overboard sometimes with photo processing, like over-sharpening images.
 
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If you have Photoshop and know how to make adjustment layers, you need to make a card that has true white, true black and true middle grey. Set up your camera on a tripod or something and take the pic that you want, then add the card near the bike and take a second pic.

Then fire up Photoshop and put the pic you want on one layer, put the pic with the card in a layer above that, and then put another layer as an adjustment layer. Then, adjust the color curves of the adjustment layer until it shows the correct colors on the card (until inspection black reads #000000, grey reads #767676, and white reads #FFFFFF). Then you simply hide the layer with the card.

If I am taking a photo by hand, usually I'll just use frame the shot wider than what I want with a white card in the crop off area if there's nothing in the shot that's already true white. That alone will help in processing color correction later. Grey card is really more for adjusting exposure and not totally necessary. But if you're going to use cards for color correction, the cards need to be next to or on the area that's the main subject of the shot you're taking.

If you have a DSLR with manual adjustment, all these steps aren't nearly as necessary. Sometimes I just do the readjustments manually by feel.

I don't really take a lot of pictures though, at least not like, glamor shots of stuff. Usually if I take pics, it's for a utility purpose. This is just what little I know about it. Digital lenses don't perceive things the same way our eyes do, and especially with cell phones, many lack manual adjustment options and they try too hard or go overboard sometimes with photo processing, like over-sharpening images.
Well, I suppose that's one way of doing it.
I've always had good results with the Crayola 64 pack.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
If you have Photoshop and know how to make adjustment layers, you need to make a card that has true white, true black and true middle grey. Set up your camera on a tripod or something and take the pic that you want, then add the card near the bike and take a second pic.

Then fire up Photoshop and put the pic you want on one layer, put the pic with the card in a layer above that, and then put another layer as an adjustment layer. Then, adjust the color curves of the adjustment layer until it shows the correct colors on the card (until inspection black reads #000000, grey reads #767676, and white reads #FFFFFF). Then you simply hide the layer with the card.

If I am taking a photo by hand, usually I'll just use frame the shot wider than what I want with a white card in the crop off area if there's nothing in the shot that's already true white. That alone will help in processing color correction later. Grey card is really more for adjusting exposure and not totally necessary. But if you're going to use cards for color correction, the cards need to be next to or on the area that's the main subject of the shot you're taking.

If you have a DSLR with manual adjustment, all these steps aren't nearly as necessary. Sometimes I just do the readjustments manually by feel.

I don't really take a lot of pictures though, at least not like, glamor shots of stuff. Usually if I take pics, it's for a utility purpose. This is just what little I know about it. Digital lenses don't perceive things the same way our eyes do, and especially with cell phones, many lack manual adjustment options and they try too hard or go overboard sometimes with photo processing, like over-sharpening images.
Wow, thanks for that. I don't have photoshop but everything you've suggested makes perfect sense. I've thought about the usefulness of the white card before but was never able to figures exactly how to make the adjustments afterward. Greatly appreciated!
 

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Idk why but this has me cracking up. Your bikes blue brother.
 
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That’s crazy how taking a picture could change that color so drastically like that. I have a deep blue 64 impala and everyone thinks it’s purple when I send pics.
 
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