I was wondering the way of getting this kind of effect (colors):

Do you know some good tutorials?

  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ Unless you know something more, there is nothing special about these photos that require any manipulation of any kind. These exposures can be obtained directly from any camera with manual controls, be it $150 or $5000. See my answer to another question: photo.stackexchange.com/questions/12012/… \$\endgroup\$
    – Itai
    May 20, 2011 at 3:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ Take a look at the pictures' Exif infos' on flickr: #1 and #2 They tell you exactly what camera settings the photographer was using. \$\endgroup\$ May 20, 2011 at 14:32

3 Answers 3


These pictures don't look like they have been retouched much, if at all. The color in those pictures comes from the natural color cast of each of the light sources.

In the first picture:

  • The building near the center of the picture is lit by incandescent or "tungsten" light, which is warm light -- that is, it has more red and less blue than sunlight, so it appears "orange". The tree on the far-left side is also lit by tungsten light.
  • The lights on the ground also appear to be tungsten. (They could be candles -- I can't really tell.)
  • The small building/obelisk on the left is mostly lit by what seems to be white LEDs. Cheap white LEDs emit very cool light -- they have more blue and less red than sunlight, so they appear blue. There is also a string of incandescent lights on the left side, and some red and green lights on the front.
  • The street light is probably a mercury vapor lamp, which is close to sunlight in color temperature but has a greenish tint. This gives the starburst and the things hanging on the wire a green color.

In the second picture:

  • The billboard at the top/center of the image is probably lit by some variety of high-intensity discharge lamps with a color balance near daylight.
  • The red streaks across the bottom of the image are trails caused by car taillights moving past.
  • The passenger train on the bridge probably has fluorescent lights inside, which can have all sorts of different colors. Much of the time, these have a yellow or green tint.
  • The street lights are high-pressure sodium vapor lamps, which are orange-yellow and have very little green or blue content.
  • The stop lights, of course, are red.
  • There appears to be a storefront casting fluorescent light onto the sidewalk.
  • There's also a cool-white fluorescent lighting the poster and wall on the left edge of the frame.

One point that hasn't been raised (but deserves mention, IMO) is careful timing: taking the picture when it's dark enough for artificial lights to show up well, but there's still enough daylight for the sky to be (dark) blue instead of black, and you have some ambient light so shadows aren't just inky black like they tend to be when it gets much darker.


To me, it looks like he has merely used a higher contrast and warmed the white balance to give that warm tint.


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