Red Eye and Your Digital Camera You’ve seen the dreaded demon-eye effect that occurs when the camera flash bounces off the eye of a person or pet. An otherwise wonderful picture can be ruined by this. Technically, this is called red-eye and is caused when the pupil of your subject’s eye is wide open and the light from the camera’s flash reflects off the subjects retina. In people, the color ends up red; in pets, the color is often green. Many photo editing programs include a red-eye correction filter, but this may not allow your photograph subject to appear “normal. These filters also do not work on the green effect produced in a pet’s eyes. Photo stores sell pens that are used to clear up red-eye, but again they are not always natural-looking and do not work on the green. The best thing is to prevent the demon-eye effect from the start. It is rare to find a digital camera that does not come with a red-eye reduction feature. This feature can be turned off or on. It is best left on in all circumstances other than direct sunlight. The red-eye reduction feature works by flashing a short burst of light at your subject before you snap the picture. This burst of light causes the subject’s pupil to close and makes it less likely for the camera’s flash to reflect off the retina. This in turn reduces the chance of red-eye. It also helps to direct the flash of your camera so it does not directly hit your subject’s eyes. Bouncing the flash off a nearby wall or other object will soften its effect and reduce the chances of this unwanted malady. Between bouncing the flash and using your digital camera’s redeye reduction feature, your little angel, whether human or animal, will have eyes that don’t glow.
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