By: Paul S. Cilwa Viewed: 4/5/2020
Posted: 4/17/2009
Topics/Keywords: #Photography Page Views: 3337
All about the cool things I can do with my new digital camera.

My new Canon Powershot G10 camera that I got from my daughters Jenny and Karen for Christmas, has so many features that I haven't yet learned to use them all. But I am trying to pick up a new technique each week. And this week, I discovered a couple of features that I would never have guessed a camera has, or needs. They are called "Color Swap" and "Color Accent".

The Color Swap feature does exactly what it claims: It allows you to replace any particular color in a scene, with any other color (in the scene or not). I suppose the usual purpose would be to take a commercial photo of a blue car and have the result be of a red car. But all I could think to do to try out the effect was to replace the blue sky with a green one.

The park across from our house, if it was on a planet with a green sky. Example of Canon Powershot G10's "Color Swap" mode.

Notice the appropriateness of the reflection of the sky on the roof of my car.

The second effect, Color Accent, might prove a little more useful. You identify any color that appears in the scene, and the camera automatically removes all color from anything that is not that color.

Manually-acheived color accent on the boutonnière.

Color Accent is a commonly-used effect these days, ever since digital photography made it easy to accomplish. But it isn't always just one color you want to remove, but all the color from anything but the object you want to accent. I used the effect in a photo from my daughter Dorothy Elizabeth's wedding, as seen at left. I wanted to emphasize the entire boutonnière, both the flower and the leaves. So I used a digital photo editor to "paint out" the color everywhere else in the photo. This is a manual process and, yes, it took a little time to accomplish.

Often, however, an artistic photographer will in fact wish to emphasize something that is one color: lips, a flower, grass, sky. And that is where the in-camera effect can save a lot of tedious time.

To test out the effect, I stored the color of the bougainvillea flowers in our front yard, then told the camera to accent that color. Here's the result:

Example of Canon Powershot G10's "Color Accent" mode.

I can't imagine I'll be using these effects very often. But it's nice to know that, if I do need them, they're there!