“Color Spaces” As I know them
- Aug 30th. 2012
- Posted in Tips & Tricks . videos
- @ThomasShue . Adobe RGB . Color Gamut . Color Space . ICC Profile . Lilsamedia . lilsamedia.com . prophoto RGB . sRGB . Thomas Shue . Thomas Shue Photography . tom shue
- By Thomas Shue
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“Color Spaces” As I know them.
Hi, welcome to my blog. Today I am going to cover Color Space as I know it. Please, do not consider me the all knowing authority on color spaces. I only offer you the information, as I understand it. I present reference images in the video, to explain my thought process. I am sure I can learn much more on the topic (this could be said about lots of things in life), however, I do know as much as I think I need to in order to correctly manage color for my workflow purposes.
I have a good understanding of how to profile all of my devices, like my cameras, printers, monitors and scanner. I think a color managed workflow is very important, if for nothing else, to insure the images that I deliver to a client are 100% correct with respect to color. I also ensure the images that I print, as well as uploads to the web, match my monitors. Setting up a color managed workflow is pretty simple after you invest in the gear needed to make life easier. This post isn’t a “how to” for color management, so I’ll just proceed with my “Color Space” explanation.
When dealing with color space, one thing that is often overlooked, and this is understanding the capability of your monitor to see color. In most cases, unless you spend a ton of extra money to buy special wide gamut monitors, all of the colors you see are actually in the sRGB color space. It doesn’t matter if you’ve captured an image using Adobe RGB or exported from lightroom using ProPhoto RBG as a color space, the bottom line is the monitor is physically incapable of displaying the extra colors. There are no software, tricks, magic potions or rain dances that will change that fact, and with that said, why bother with any space other than sRGB?
It is a different story if you buy a special monitor that can see all that extra colors, but they are very expensive and they really only exist is for viewing files for a printing process called, “Spot Color” also known as CMYK. Instead of making colors with RGB = Red Green & Blue, they use a subtractive process that mixes color using Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and BlacK. With that said if you are planning to publish images to the web, or print inkjet photos, there is no reason to use any color space other than sRGB. Again this is only my opinion, please investigate this topic for yourself and make a full and educated decision, before you decide what color space you want to work in.
So, I will leave you with this video that I created, to explain color space as I know it. Please remember this video is not intended to be definitive in any way, I am not claiming this video is the ONLY or even the BEST way to understand color space. I am only offering my thoughts on color space because I think it might be helpful to someone. Thanks for taking time to read my blog. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to post them below. I will answer them as soon as I can. I hope you have a great day. Thomas Shue