Exploring Creative Filters on a Canon EOS Rebel T3i - dummies

Exploring Creative Filters on a Canon EOS Rebel T3i

By Julie Adair King

You can do a lot of fun stuff to your photos you take with your Canon Rebel T3i after you import them into some kind of photo editing application. But for some creative effects, you don’t have to wait that long (or buy any extra software). With the Creative Filters tool on Playback Menu 1, you can create some fun special effects before you even download photos to your computer. To try ‘em out, follow these steps:

  1. Display Playback Menu 1 and highlight Creative Filters.


  2. Press Set.

  3. Use the right or left cross keys to scroll to the photo you want to alter.

  4. Press Set.

    The icons at the bottom of the screen represent the five effects filters, which are:


    • Grainy B/W: This filter turns your photos into old-fashioned, grainy, black-and-white photos.

    • Soft Focus: This filter blurs the photo so it looks all soft and cuddly. It’s great to use on photos of brides, babies, kittens, and teddy bears. And of course, it’s ideal for making your water garden photo look like a Monet painting.

    • Fish-eye: Choose this option to distort your photo so that it appears to have been shot using a fish-eye lens.


    • Toy Camera: Creates an image with dark corners called a vignette effect. Vignetting is caused by poor-quality lenses not letting enough light in to expose the entire frame of film (like in toy cameras). When you choose this effect, you can also add a warm (yellowish) or cool (blue) tint.

    • Miniature: This filter creates a trick of the eye by playing with depth of field. It blurs all but a very small area of the photo to create a result that looks something like one of those miniature dioramas you see in museums.

      This effect works best on pictures taken from a high angle.

  5. Use the cross keys to select a filter and then press Set.

  6. Tweak the effect if desired.

    Which controls appear depend on the effect.

  7. Press Set.

  8. Highlight OK and press Set again.

    The camera creates a copy of your image, applies the effect, and then displays a message telling you the folder number and last four digits of the file number of the altered photo. If the original was captured using the Raw Quality setting, the altered image is stored in the JPEG format.

  9. Highlight OK and press Set one more time.

    You’re returned to the beginning filter screen. You can then apply additional effects if you want. Or press Menu to exit the Creative Filters screens altogether.

You can apply multiple filters to the same photo if you really want to go crazy. For example, you can go through the steps once to create a fish-eye effect and then apply the Grainy B/W filter to create a monochrome fish-eye photo.