Dress for the Light

By Jackie Effenson, February 27, 2015, Events & Fun

Dress for the Light



That’s what you’ve been saying since last night if you’ve seen the now-infamous “Blue and Black” / “White and Gold” #TheDress kerfuffle..

I never feel this way about a dress! When I put one on, I feel more beautiful, more put-together. You toss it on and you go, and everyone thinks you look fantastic, right?

But, is it possible that when I post a picture of myself in this apparently oh-so-stylish dress so my social networks can see just how awesome I look, they actually are seeing my dress in different colors? Let’s talk about the predicament this causes not only for my shoes and makeup, but even for my selected Instagram filter?

What actually happened with this picture? Go figure, it all comes back to the light. You’ve heard of color blocking. Now, meet color balance. Light sources produce degrees of warmth or coolness of white light. While your eye can see accurately what does or does not appear white, a camera may not. This is why photographers must white balance. Without this process, the visual result is often – you guessed it – BLUE, rather than white. Also even orange.

So, the next time a dress floods your social news feeds and instigates a call to your optometrist, pay attention to the background. There is a lot of white light throwing the white balance off with the photograph. Your eyes and brain first adjust to favor either the blue or the gold, and then adjust further to reflect the blue/black or gold/white color scheme.

So what have we learned? Good lighting is everything. And don’t forget to take a selfie.

Dress for the Light

Oh, Cher. #Clueless

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