What’s wrong with this picture? (Mixing color temperatures)

[Editor’s Note: Michael has taken down the video, so the link below does not work.]

When you’re a streaming producer, you can’t help but watch other streaming videos with a critical eye. Here’s one from Michael Katz of Blue Penguin Development, who teaches professional service providers how to position themselves as “likeable experts.” It’s a good column on building trust, but you’ll notice that one side of Michael’s shirt is white, the other blue. I’m including frame grab here with the embedded video below, in case Michael takes down or updates the video.


This is caused by using light sources with different color temperatures. I’m guessing that Michael used yellow-ish incandescent lighting on his right, and white balanced to that temperature (or his camera auto-white balanced to that temperature). Then he added fluorescent or other lighting with a bluish temperature on his left. Mixing color temperatures causes a problem that your camera can’t resolve and that you can’t fix in post. Well, perhaps you can, but it’s definitely easier to get it right at the shoot.

No big deal; I’m guessing that few, if any, of Michael’s 7,000 newsletter recipients noticed the problem. I’m not being catty by showing this, it’s just one of the starkest demonstrations of what can go wrong with mixed lighting that I’ve actually seen on the web, so I had to share.

Other than that, Ms. Lincoln, how was the play? Well, Michael’s production skills have improved significantly since he started, with a more compression friendly background and now a lavalierre microphone. And the video itself on building trust is pretty useful. So, here it is.