Color Space Question

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by dmatsui, Dec 26, 2008.

  1. dmatsui

    dmatsui TPF Noob!

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    I think what i'm taking about is called color space, or something along those lines. Basically i want to be able to print out images, or have them printed and them looking more or less the same as they do on my moniter. To my knowledge that means setting the color mode on your camera to adobe rgb (which i have done) and doing the same on photoshop. I changed photoshops color space to AdobeRGB a while ago but the problem was that when i saved it and put the files on the internet, on a site like deviantart, the colors were different then what i had seen on photoshop. I then promptly changed them back to whatever they were on and havent worried about it until recently when i got some pictures printed.
    So basically how do i do this? If i want to print do i need to go back to the Raw files and edit the pictures again this time in the adobeRGB color space.
    I put my pictures on the web much more often then i print them, therefore i find it easier to keep photoshop in the color space it was on.
    How does everyone else do this?

    Oh and a quick side question, i just got a SB-600 for christmas. If i'm not mistaking to get soft light indoors you either bounce your flash off the ceiling or walls, this obviously doesnt work outdoors as there are usually no walls to bounce off of. The SB-600 was a little diffuser that you can flip on to your flash if i'm not mistaken the way the diffuser works is that it spreads the light around allowing that light to bounce off of everything and soften the light on your subject. Again does this requires walls of some sort and wouldnt the diffuser therefore simply waste some of your flashes power? So how would you diffuse your light outside?
     
  2. SpeedTrap

    SpeedTrap TPF Noob!

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    First thing about Colour Space. If you monitors are not calibrated you might not be doing youself any good. By using Calibrated monitors along with correct colour Space workflow you will get pictures that print as you view them. If you would like to put a picture up on the web, you can save a copy for the web and then go into PS and assign a different colour profile to it (sRBG) This will make it apear on the web as you see it.

    One thing to remember is that most people do not have calibrated monitors so don't stress out too much about how it looks on the web. Everyone will see it differently.

    As for the question about the flash, yes diffusers do eat a bit of power from your flsh, but that is the price you pay for softer light. You may want to look into something like a Sto-fen defuser. I have one on all my flashed and they work great indoors and out.
     
  3. OldClicker

    OldClicker TPF Noob!

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    A diffuser also makes the light source bigger. The flash is essentially a point source. A diffuser makes the light come from the entire area. This acts like many little sources of light and softens the edges of the shadows. Now a 5 inch square diffuser at 15 feet may not to matter a lot, but it will at 5 feet. - TF
     
  4. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I wouldn't worry about Color Space as much as other folks do. Just set it up in your camera to whatever and let your image editing program do the rest. The more important issue here is to make sure your MONITOR is calibrated correctly so you are seeing exactly what the true colors of your photos are, regardless of what color space you are working in. Photoshop also allows you to manage the printing color profile, but it will (generally) do a fine job of that itself. If you are worried, simply go into your printer dialog box and choose Photoshop Managed Color versus Printer Manages Color.

    Thats not what that is. It is a wide flash adapter, used for lenses that are shorter in focal length than 24MM.
     
  5. tsaraleksi

    tsaraleksi TPF Noob!

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    When you're outside you're more or less stuck with direct flash. Luckily you are less likely to run into walls and other surfaces where direct flash will give you nasty black shadows.
     
  6. dtornabene1

    dtornabene1 TPF Noob!

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    SpeedTrap is absolutely correct. While the subject of monitor calibration can get complicated, remember, it is really system calibration. Your camera, your monitor, possibly a scanner, and of course your printer.

    There are some inexpensive solutions for color calibrations. Most important is to set your color space to sRGB not Adobe RGB. Professional labs use sRGB not Adobe.

    If you want a more detailed discussion about calibration let me know. I used to run a Prepress department for a large printing company. Correct color is really most important for that type of application.

    Just be sure to use sRGB. LCD monitors use sRGB as a standard not Adobe RGB. That is why Photoshop needs to adjust your monitor upon computer start-up.

    -Nick
     
  7. dmatsui

    dmatsui TPF Noob!

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    At the moment i do have photoshop set to sRGB however according to scott kelbys photoshop cs2 book for digital photographers Adobe RGB 1998 makes more sense for photographs when printing. Here is a quote from the book.
    Idtornabene1, i'm not trying to say your wrong or anything but what your saying seems to contradict what he is saying and it confuses me a little bit.

    It does look however like i'm going to have to calibrate my monitor. I'm curious though in a short while i may be getting a new computer, could i use the same software to calibrate that monitor as well? While we're at it would the software for macs and computers be the same? My friends dad is a professional photographer who uses mac computers so i could only assume he has some kind of calibration software the question is would it work on a PC?


    As for the diffuser question i understand that a larger area will soften shadows however looking at the sto fen diffuser it doesnt look like it would increase the surface area that much. I'm sure it does help to a certain extent but i suppose umbrellas or a diffuser with a larger surface area would be better? It would be nice if you guys could post examples of a photo where the sto fen diffuser is on in one shot and taken off in another (outdoors) so i can see the difference.


    Thanks for all the help though.
     
  8. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The colour space is the set of colours possibly representable in an image by the data in the image. I.e. it defines how red the RGB value 255,0,0 really is. Simple bigger means better right and all photographers should use the biggest right?

    The topic is unfortunately complicated. Ask youself do you photos have colour that they are missing (do you photograph LEDs or lasers, most of what is normally visible actually fits in sRGB with no problem)? Do you have a way to display and edit this colour (a wide gamut monitor and a fully colour managed workflow)? Do you have a way to print this colour (take prints to a pro lab, or have a very very nice 7 colour photoprinter at home)? If you answered yes to all of these then it may be worth working in AdobeRGB, otherwise skip the headache. For the record, every awesome photo you have ever seen on the web along with their fantastic colours falls inside the bounds of StupidRGB because your monitor and likely your internet browser can't display any wider colour gamuts.

    Now to comparing to the print:

    This is a separate issue from the working colour profile. sRGB can still be perfectly use to match to prints, but the key here is to learn to use the smaller colour spaces of you monitor and printer to soft proof. All you need are a few simple things:

    1. A calibrated monitor, with the monitor profile loaded into the system so photoshop knows what it's doing.
    2. A calibrated room, no I am not kidding. Have a look at some specs for viewing conditions on colour matching. The room should have a certain lux and brightness or the monitor calibration becomes useless as the eye adjusts itself to the lighting conditions of the room.
    3. A calibrated viewing booth. Normally provides 5000k colour temperature with high CRI and again at a specific brightness.
    4. The printer's calibration profile.

    Once you have all these 4 THEN you can do what is called softproofing. That is display the working image on your display using the colour profile of your printer. This soft proof will then be comparable to the image while the image is viewed in the viewing booth. For everything else you won't be able to visibly match the print.


    But you can try coming a bit closer regardless. I suggest you look into a basic calibration tool for your monitor, grab the colour profiles from your printer manufacturers website, or from whoever will make your prints, and then play with soft proofing anyway. You won't match with 100% certainty, but every little bit helps.

    Read this. It's a primer on softproofing with photoshop:
    http://homepage.mac.com/ilyons/pdf/ps6_sp.pdf
     
  9. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    I use an X-Rite Monaco Optix XR calibration set. At the time I purchased it there were on a few sub $500 calibration kit options, and it was highly recommended by Will Crockett of ShootSmarter.com (I think they've got pretty good articles and reviews testing gear in real world situations). There are probably more options today.

    I've worked in all sRGB for the last 4 years: my camera was set to sRGB, Photoshop set to sRGB, etc.... As I understand it raw doesn't really have a color space until assigned one when converted to a tiff or jpeg, and I shoot raw so I don't know if it even mattered what my camera was set to. It made sense to me to work in the color space my lab wanted, and I didn't feel like my photos were missing out on anything: the colors looked great.

    Recently I've started using Lightroom, and it uses Prophoto RGB, so I've set my cameras to Adobe RGB (I don't have a Prophoto RGB option, but like I said since I'm shooting raw I don't know if it matters), and Photoshop to Prophoto RGB. At the end of processing in PS or LR I convert to sRGB for the lab. Colors still look great, and I'm instructing the lab to make no corrections on my prints. I've read several recent articles from prior sRGB supporters who now say they can see the difference in photos processed entirely in sRGB vs those processed in another color space, and then converted to sRGB at the end. I haven't done any personal testing so I can't really say that I see any difference. My prints come back from the lab like I want them to so I'm happy.
     
  10. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Just to fill in: RAW has no colour space that is right. What Lightroom and every other process that converts a RAW is take the camera "input profile" to convert the data to whatever the "working profile" is, and in the case of Lightroom it's known as Melissa RGB a linear colour space which is not evident to the user. Only when an image is exported is it assigned a normal working colour space like ProPhoto.

    The process of printing or displaying graphics on screen then relies on the "output profile." If at any time the profiles differ from sRGB then they need to be embedded in the image or the software will no know what to do. If no profile is present in the image all software defaults to assuming it is sRGB.
     
  11. SpeedTrap

    SpeedTrap TPF Noob!

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    This sounds like your lab uses sRBG, but the 3 labs I deal with all use both sRBG and Adobe 1998.

    I have been using the Adobe profile for several years and never had a problem, it has been my experence that if you are using the images for on the web sRBG is a better choice to deal with the general public inexpensive monitors.
    If you are working to print, I would use Adobe 1998, it has a larger Gamut, but you need higher end monitors to display everything correctly.
     
  12. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Actually it matters not what format you send it to the lab. As long as the icc is embedded in the file the conversion takes place to the output profile regardless of the source profile.

    The benefit of using sRGB is that if the lab's software doesn't understand icc profiles (which is unlikely) or if the staff are idiots (sadly this is too common) then there can be no misunderstanding of colours. Of course the only pro lab in my area to use Adobe RGB also has a printer capable of taking advantage of the extra colour, but only in the green direction, and not enough to make a side by side notable difference.
     

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