The Naked Scientists

The Naked Scientists Forum

Author Topic: What determines how colours appear on my computer?  (Read 2972 times)

Offline cheryl j

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1460
  • Thanked: 1 times
    • View Profile
I was ordering artists paints on line. It's cheaper that way, but it's always a crap shoot because the colors they show are never very true. So I was just curious how many things affect what the company photographs and what I end up seeing on line with my lap top.
« Last Edit: 03/01/2014 08:38:43 by chris »


 

Offline CliffordK

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 6321
  • Thanked: 3 times
  • Site Moderator
    • View Profile
Re: What determines color on my computer
« Reply #1 on: 02/01/2014 01:32:36 »
Do you mix your paints?  When I took painting a while ago, we were only given a small set of primary colors.  I don't think we were even allowed to use black as the instructor liked the idea of slight variations in shade from mixing one's own black.

Bring up your favorite graphics program and play around with the color balance controls (or if you wish, find where you can adjust them with your monitor, as long as you are sure you can recover). 

Saturation and contrast certainly can vary.  But, perhaps the hue could vary slightly too. 

There should be some way to calibrate your monitor.  However, I looked up "Color Bars" on Google, and there certainly is quite some variation from one to another.
 

Offline cheryl j

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1460
  • Thanked: 1 times
    • View Profile
Re: What determines color on my computer
« Reply #2 on: 02/01/2014 02:42:08 »
Well, they do that to encourage students to experiment and learn to mix colors. And although you can mix a large number of shades from the primaries, you dilute the intensity. For example, the hue you get from mixing red and blue paint to get purple usually wont be as saturated or vibrant as a paint made just from oil and particles that reflect light in the violet range.
 

Offline evan_au

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 4113
  • Thanked: 245 times
    • View Profile
Re: What determines color on my computer
« Reply #3 on: 02/01/2014 08:02:28 »
You can buy colour reference cards, and use these to adjust the colours displayed on your screen.

You can print out colours on your printer, and get quite a different hue...

There are hardware devices that can calibrate the colour emitted from your screen or reflected by your printer inks.

None of these can help with the fact that the colour perceived on the colour card, computer printout or paints will be affected by the lighting in the room (eg incandescent, LED, fluorescent or sunlight). Even after calibration, the colour perceived on the computer screen is affected by how your eye has adjusted to compensate for the ambient lighting...

It is helped if the photographs were originally taken with the same colour card - many modern cameras will change their white balance settings based on the scene - and the scene is dominated by the paint they are imaging!

In the end, colour is in the eye of the beholder (although some would argue that it is actually in the viewer's brain).
 

Offline RD

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 8125
  • Thanked: 53 times
    • View Profile
Re: What determines color on my computer
« Reply #4 on: 02/01/2014 10:41:32 »
In the end, colour is in the eye of the beholder (although some would argue that it is actually in the viewer's brain).

The colour of light illuminating the room the computer screen is in is a factor in how the colour appears.
 The surrounding colour can make a big difference :
the centre of both these crosses are the same shade of grey but appear blue and yellow ...

« Last Edit: 07/01/2014 17:57:22 by RD »
 

Offline syhprum

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 3818
  • Thanked: 19 times
    • View Profile
Re: What determines how colours appear on my computer?
« Reply #5 on: 07/01/2014 17:10:23 »
I the early days of electronic picture (1980) processing for print we had a viewing box that contained a sample of the print colour that we wished to match and a light source that we fitted over the monitor and viewed side by side with the image on the screen.
this at least in theory enabled us to adjust the computer until we got a match but no one was ever very satisfied with the results.
We used to get special CRT,s with a green more suited to the four colour print process but the trouble with the RCA system how ever carefully you adjusted them you could not get a consistent  colour over the whole face of the monitor
« Last Edit: 08/01/2014 23:01:22 by syhprum »
 

Offline Grimbo1

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 24
    • View Profile
Re: What determines how colours appear on my computer?
« Reply #6 on: 07/01/2014 19:40:55 »
You can buy true colour monitors, but there not cheep.
Also the pic needs to be taken properly to be any good.
I think your hoping for to much at the moment. The cost is too prohibitive.
You best bet is to buy some samples of paint. then use the colour display calibration program
in windows to match your samples.
« Last Edit: 07/01/2014 19:45:58 by Grimbo1 »
 

Offline CliffordK

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 6321
  • Thanked: 3 times
  • Site Moderator
    • View Profile
Re: What determines how colours appear on my computer?
« Reply #7 on: 07/01/2014 19:56:57 »
I agree.  I often use dual monitors (different brands) on my computer, and it is a pain to just get both of them to display more or less the same thing. 

But, it is an issue with both the photos and the display.  Some paint vendors may try to make true color swatches, but some may not really care.

Is it possible to figure out what a room will look like based on a paper color swatch from your local store hardware store?
 

Offline evan_au

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 4113
  • Thanked: 245 times
    • View Profile
Re: What determines how colours appear on my computer?
« Reply #8 on: 08/01/2014 09:55:00 »
Quote from: CliffordK
Is it possible to figure out what a room will look like based on a paper color swatch from your local store hardware store?

Some hardware stores now do the reverse: You take in a sample of the colour you want to match, they scan your sample, and they mix up a tin of paint that will match that colour - when it dries. (It can look quite a different colour while it is still wet..)
 

Offline Grimbo1

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 24
    • View Profile
Re: What determines how colours appear on my computer?
« Reply #9 on: 08/01/2014 10:21:48 »
We have the technology to laser scan your room, to make a 3D computer model.
Get yourself a virtual reality headset and change your décor to your hearts content, very cool.
The danger is of course, why bother to decorate. Just don't take off the VR headset, scary eh.
 

The Naked Scientists Forum

Re: What determines how colours appear on my computer?
« Reply #9 on: 08/01/2014 10:21:48 »

 

SMF 2.0.10 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
SMFAds for Free Forums
 
Login
Login with username, password and session length