Choosing and Customizing a Picture Style

Mark Picture Style Portrait

Picture Styles have risen in popularity with so many photographers that Canon has given the 5D Mark II a dedicated Picture Style button on the back of the camera. From this menu, you select one of the six preset styles or create your own style and save it as one of three customizable Picture Style settings. Having the ability to create three distinct customized Picture Styles and recalling them quickly for different shooting situations is a huge timesaver. The 5D Mark II attaches a Picture...

Restoring the Cameras Default Settings

With all the different settings, you may sometimes want to start fresh instead of backtracking to reset individual settings. The 5D Mark II offers several restore settings, including a Clear all camera settings option as well as a Clear copyright info option that allows you to clear the information that you entered in EOS Utility. This option is a good way to start fresh, but be aware that it resets all shooting and image-quality settings back to the factory defaults. In addition to the...

Front and Rear Curtain Sync

All Canon EOS cameras have two moving curtains in the shutter mechanism. The front curtain opens the shutter, and the rear curtain closes it. The normal operation of the shutter and flash causes the flash to fire immediately when the front curtain opens. This is Front Curtain Sync, and it's fine for most general flash applications. But say your subject is moving and you're panning the camera by using a slow shutter speed to pick up some ambient light. Flash photography in this mode produces...

Flash Exposure Compensation

Flash Exposure Compensation is much like autoexposure compensation in that you can set compensation for flash exposure up to -2 stops in 1 3-stop increments. A positive compensation setting increases the flash output and vice versa. Flash Exposure Compensation helps reduce shadows in the background, balance unevenly lit scenes, and is a highly effective tool for producing natural-looking images. Generally, you can set compensation on either the camera or the Speedlite or both. If you set it on...

Setting a white balance shift

Similar to white balance autobracketing, you can manually set the color bias of images to a single setting by using white balance shift. The color can be biased toward blue B , amber A , magenta M , or green G in up to nine levels measured as mireds, or densities. Each level of color-correction you set is equivalent to 5 mireds of a color-temperature conversion filter. When you set a color shift or bias, it's used for all images until you change the setting. On the 5D Mark II, color...

Exposure compensation

Another way to modify the standard exposure on the 5D Mark II is by using exposure compensation, which enables you to purposely and continuously modify the standard exposure by a specific amount up to 2 f-stops in 1 3-stop or 1 2-stop increments via C.Fn I-01. A common use is to override the camera's suggested ideal exposure in scenes that have large areas of white or black. In these types of scenes, the camera's onboard meter averages light or dark scenes to 18 gray to render large expanses of...

Choosing a white balance approach

The 5D Mark II offers three basic approaches to setting white balance. This gives you flexibility to use different approaches in different shooting scenarios. Some examples that provide a starting point for using each of the three methods include Using a preset white balance setting. For outdoor shooting, especially in clearly defined lighting conditions such as bright daylight, an overcast sky, or in fluorescent light using a preset white balance setting produces accurate color. The exception...