Effects (in camera)

Many cameras offer a range of special image effects, usually taking over some or all of the camera controls and using in-camera image processing too. Examples include vintage sepia toning, tilt-shift ‘miniature’ effects, toy camera or cross-processing effects.


Any image adjustment that produces a ‘look’ characteristic of specific photographic or darkroom techniques. It can include infra-red effects, as created by infra-red film, a ‘polarising’ effect to simulate the results from using a polarising filter on the lens, a ‘tilt-shift’ effect to replicate the shallow depth of field of an extreme close-up and so on. Effects can sometimes be applied in-camera but are more likely to be added in software.


A filter in Color Efex Pro, part of the Nik Collection, which combines a soft-focus ‘glow’ effect with a colour tone. It can prove useful for some effects, but it’s not a filter you’d use every day.

Detail Extractor

A tool in some Nik plug-ins which simultaneously brightens shadow detail, brings out detail in highlights and increases local contrast to produce a more intense and dramatic image.


A relatively new tool for adding depth and contrast to hazy parts of a picture. These are often seen in distant views, but dehaze tools can also add ‘punch’ and drama to low-contrast images generally. This tool does uses ‘localised contrast’ techniques to adjust different areas of the picture to different degrees.

Contrast Color Range

A filter in Color Efex Pro which intensifies the difference in intensity and contrast between colours. It’s effective in landscape photography, for example, for intensifying blue skies without increasing the saturation of the image as a whole.


Another word for frames, a digital effect that simulates the look of a real photographic border, such as a matte, the edge of a filmstrip, the borders on a snapshot or a Polaroid and so on. Some borders, like pretend wooden frames, wouldn’t fool anyone, but others, such as negative edges, slide frames or rough-edged black edges can be quite effective.


This is a Japanese word to describe the particular visual quality of out of focus areas in a picture. You might think it hardly matters what things look like when they’re out of focus, but there’s a bit more to it than that. ‘Bad’ bokek produces unnatural-looking outlines and highlights, while ‘good’ bokeh looks ‘creamy’, smooth and natural. Good bokeh is associated with the shape of the diaphragm in the lens – more aperture blades and rounded aperture blades produce a more circular shape and better bokeh. Some photographers confuse bokeh with how out of focus a subject is, but that’s not the same thing. A lens with a wide maximum aperture can make background objects extremely defocused, but that doesn’t mean they have good ‘bokeh’.

Bi-Color filter

A filter in Color Efex Pro which applies one colour to the top half of the picture and another to the bottom half. You can adjust the vertical position (where the colour changes) and choose colour sets from a menu. There is another filter which lets you choose the colours yourself.

ACROS (Fujifilm)

Black and white film simulation mode added to newer Fujifilm cameras. It’s designed to give richer, more intense tonal rendition than the regular monochrome film simulation.