The whole idea of having a pure white background is to remove dullness from the picture. It allows the contents of the frame to breathe. There are better ways to do background whitening.
Background whitening is done to revive dull scenes also. A keen eye will be able to decipher that white has many shades and grey is also one of them. Often photos will need to be brightened and a simple background whitewash can do the trick. Sometimes a white background is desirable as it gives a lot of breathing space to the elements in the picture. Such a canvas is ideal to display delicate jewelry products. Even a smart diamond solitaire can be made to look elegant with this photo processing. The white canvas works like a fabulous cut out and the main subject can be reused in another setting. When lots of ‘grey’ areas in the white backdrop appear they could be due to the sources of light around. The eyedropper tool is used to whiten the areas that look smudgy. Various levels are adjusted to get the right temperament to the frame. The eyedropper tool and the technique of background whitening cannot be used if the color scheme of the photo is light. Both work only if there are darker tones.
White background can also be used for effect. Imagine having a picture pair of earrings against the white background. It will look flat if the earring rings are merely placed on the white surface. But if they look like they are suspended then they give depth to the frame. Background whitening can also be used as an effect and not merely just to alter the canvas setting. Yes in this case the entire surface may not be pure white. A faint little shadow may emerge showing the silhouette of the earrings. And it is ideal settings that can make a viewer admire the picture.
Take another scenario. If you were to shoot a picture of a white wall, chances are that the result will not be in pure white. There is an imbalance because the lighting has not been proper. That is why several photographers and their assistants take time to get the white balance right much before the shoot. Despite that the grey scales show up and the photo editor is given the task to do the background whitening. Even if the photographer can go ‘off white’ the photo editor will be there to make it look pure, perhaps better than the original. Some adjustments are done to make the white look white. This is now done even for websites with white background. GIMP is also software, which can create this scenario. The image window is expanded to reveal the custom color palette. It has a padding color (choose white) when the options are given for selection. Take a view of the selection and then uncheck the box. The background whitening now can be done with levels. The main subject (jewelry, rings or any other object) can be now given a fillip with this technique. The product stands out and can be seen clearly. In fact it is crystal clear and almost the ‘real thing’ to touch and feel.