Moiré or a moiré pattern can be present in your images in a number of ways. And it is what weeds are to agriculture; completely unwanted.
Read our article here on what it is and how to reduce and remove moiré via a number of ways.
What Is Moiré?
Moiré occurs when a scene or an object being photographed presents repetitive details. These include, but are not limited to, lines and dots. This effect is created by the pattern if it exceeds the sensor’s resolution.
When this happens, the camera creates a strange looking image. The areas with the most detail show a wavy moire pattern.
Shirts, jackets and even buildings are some of the most common victims. But you can find moiré anywhere.
This effect is almost never seen in nature though. But you may have seen it present on TV screens or monitors in images or news programs.
It happens mainly due to how your camera’s sensor deals with the light through what we call the Bayer interpolation filter.
How to Avoid Moiré in Photography
Avoiding a problem will always be easier than trying to fix it. There are a few ways you can try to reduce and avoid the Moiré effect:
- Analyse – If you think your scene may be producing Moiré, look at the preview of your image at 100% magnification on your LCD screen. If so, try to cut that out of the image.
- Adjust Focal Length – If Moiré is present, adjust the distance between you and your subject. Move closer or farther away, while zooming in or out. This could be a few inches, but often it can be more.
- Adjust Focus – Focus a little further away from the pattern to reduce the Moire effect if it is in your frame.
- Change Angle – Changing the angle at which you shoot an object can have a great level of reduction. Try to find a perspective where the details separate more.
- Stop Down Your Aperture – Changing your aperture to something narrower can help reduce this effect.
How to Remove Moiré in Photography
If you find yourself shooting on a wide to a medium aperture, such as f/5.6, f/8 or wider, you may consider changing your aperture to f/11 or narrower.
This will reduce the Moiré effect, but it will not eliminate it.
Zooming in slightly will help to reduce the moire effect, but you may have to move physically to reframe the image and subject correctly.
Moving and zooming can both help substantially.
Use Camera Raw
Camera Raw has a Moiré correction slider, which can be used before you bring the image into Photoshop.
You need to shoot in Raw format to use Camera Raw.
Lightroom also comes with a Moiré reduction tool. This is found by selecting an image, using the Adjustment Brush on the affected areas, and then playing with the slider until it is reduced.
There we have it. Or as Dean Martin would say, That’s A Moiré. A short guide into what exactly is Moire and how to avoid and reduce or remove it from your images.
Always check your images before you leave the scene, and try whichever method suits you and your setting best. You can even use them all together in removing the effect altogether.
Before you go, check out this video on how to deal with moire in photography.