SpyderCube – Essential On-Set Tool

My favorite white balance tool is by far the SpyderCube from DataColor. This little tool is always in my camera bag, and I find it invaluable on set, not only as a simple white balance reference, but as a lighting ratio reference, as well as a black point reference. DataColor has envisioned this tool as a complete post processing control reference and has a set of instructions for its use on the SpyderBlog , but I don’t follow all their suggestions in my own workflow – I will explain how I use the SpyderCube in the following…

Datacolor recommends using the Black slider in Lightroom  to clip the light trap hole to the black point – of course the black point in Lightroom indicated by the clipping indicators is zero. I never want to end up with a zero black point because that would guarantee that I’d lose important shadow detail in a print. Instead, I’d like to make the lowest value neutral without shifting the mid-tone neutral around. The SpyderCube easily locates the darkest point in the camera image – it will be in the light trap hole!

“How to Desaturate Shadows in Photoshop, for 3D Contrast” The SpyperCube comes in handy for this as well – I’ll go through the steps using the SpyderCube below…

Process the adjusted SpyderCube shot into Photoshop…

Datacolor seems to really have the photographer in mind with a lot of their products, and its well worth checking out the SpyderLENSCAL, SpyderPRINT, SpyderCheckr, and the Spyder4 monitor calibrator…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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