A Rant About Colour
Today, in a thread on the GetDPI forum, I posted the following rant. It relates to an image posted by a forum member who, having posted some images from her new Sony A7r, had been told by some people that they could see colour shading in the sky and by others that they either could not see it at all or that it was normal or natural.
"Since we're all having our 2 Cents, here are mine:
I'm sure that's true Tim - and I also am certain that human colour vision is far more variable and far more culturally conditioned than is widely accepted.I own a print I bought at a photo gallery that has a really cyan sky and it bugs the hell out of me but no one else ever notices until I point it out and even then, some people can't see that it looks unnatural.
Where this becomes bothersome is when I make an edition of 25 prints and sell the first few, but keep the rest of the series unprinted ready for 'on demand' production. Worst case scenario, the 25th sells years after the 1st and by then I am on a new printer. Best case, I am on the same ink set and paper batch… I did have an HP printer for a while that made its own profiles for every new paper batch and ink set but I didn't find the results more consistent than just using my Canon iP6300 with the best profile I can find.
Then there's paper that I just can't get right so give up on: Kodak metallic seems determined to give me cyan skies!
I've heard repeatedly in the print industry and once in the screen industry that people want to avoid a green cast at all costs and because random variability will give green occasionally they tend to err on the side of magenta where possible. Also the standard for colour accuracy is deltaE (deltaE 2000 if you're a geek) where an error of 1 is visible by the naked eye. Most litho printers work to an error margin of 3. However even if you have a monitor that is calibrated to an error of under 1 and another monitor that is also calibrated to an error of 1 you will still possibly have an error of 2 between them - making the difference visible.
I have been following the color debate over at GetDpi and found that the magenta colorshift was really minimal.
However as the owner of an iPad2 (non Retina display) and very recently of an iPad Air, well I was really deceived by the Retina display. There is a huge difference between both. The iPad 2 had perfect colors. My iPad Air has a strong yellow cast. Greens are never green, the pictures look muddy. The skies are turning to magenta (and that said from someone who prefer when skies aren't too cyan). A saturated blue can turn to purple. And reds are just not showing up.
To the point that I will try to get it replaced by Apple.
Showing pictures on an iPad is a great way to promote your pictures and you can always have it with you.
I'm having a similar rant about color gamut vs calibration issues on the new iPads. Non photographers complaining about minor color shift issues or only covering 67% of argh in the case of the mini. However I have shown using spyder gallery identical results with high color images, when using spyder gallery. Even if you're a pro to think a new ipad mini retina isn't good enough to show a portfolio. Well if clients are that critical break out a print portfolio.
Also light bleed on devices at 100% brightness in black rooms. Who's viewing a digital device like that?
No comments posted.
Recent PostsBroken Promise The Sony Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* FE 24-70mm F4 ZA OSS: Hallelujah! Camera, Lens, Accessory and Image Awards 2013 Sony FE 35mm F2.8 ZA on the A7R: The 'Bisto' lens. Sony A7R with a selection of Leica M lenses and a Novoflex adaptor A Rant About Colour The Third Variable The Olympus E-M1: Micro Four Thirds comes of age? Olympus 12-40mm F2.8 Pro M.Zuiko Review: "The Hammer" Sony: E-mount 16-70mm opinion & some thoughts on A7 & A7R.