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  1. #1
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    Help on Color Accuracy

    I am having a problem getting a photo to match what I think I actually see. The first photo below is an "as taken" jpg photo. The second photo was taken RAW and developed to a jpg photo. I think the "as is" photo has green that is too light. And the "raw to jpg" has green about right. My wife thinks the "as is" is about right and the "raw to jpg" green is too dark.

    So, I would appreciate comments from someone who has more experience than I do.


    Photo above is "as taken" jpg.


    Photo above was taken as raw and developed to jpg.

    Thanks for any advice, Jim

  2. #2
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    Re: Help on Color Accuracy

    Jim

    when camera does .jpg it makes the decisions for you, using internal software. As a matter, in most non-pro models, you can manipulate even that by telling it to process .jpg as "vivid", "normal" and so on. Raw file is just that - raw data that you can manipulate. When it comes to the green color, you can pretty much make it look like whatever you want. But, if so, what is the true green color? This is a complex question, I think.

    Some thoughts:

    1. calibrate your monitor, or whatever you do, you will not know.
    2. decide what color space you will work in - sRGB, adobeRBG, prophoto or similar
    3. realize that most web services only work with sRGB - and that other may look weird on the web
    4. realize that printers struggle with showing color as seen on the screen - use printer color profiles
    5. you would have to find a black, white and gray point (levels) and use white balance to even out color

    I am sure others have many other thoughts on this as well.

    Stevan

  3. #3
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    Re: Help on Color Accuracy

    Did you try to take a picture of a gray card (card with standardized level of gray)?

    Google for "gray card" to find more info.

  4. #4
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    Re: Help on Color Accuracy

    Calvin's suggestion on the grey card is good for exposure/density, but I wonder if it's just the density that's different?

    Shooting off on a slight sidebar, if the color is different too then an unscientific approach is to remember how it was and to adjust it to the way you remember. Sensors and film cannot duplicate with 100% accuracy what you saw, so I think there's some validity to making post processing adjustments - either to the JPG or to the RAW - to make it the way you saw it.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Help on Color Accuracy

    Thanks for the replies. Both the camera and the developer program (SilkyPix 3.0 SE that came with the camera) are at default settings. Which parameters would be best to adjust to get the camera closer to the raw developed? I am a novice when it comes to adjusting the various parameters. I suppose the camera, when set to produce a jpg, goes through some process similar to what SilkyPix does to a raw image? And the camera has many adjustments to many parameters as does the SilkyPix program. I am just not sure which ones to tinker with for this situation.

    Thanks, Jim

  6. #6
    Senior Member armando_m's Avatar
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    Re: Help on Color Accuracy

    I always struggle with color, more if there is a person, skin colors give me the more trouble

    I have not used a gray card, and I think might be a good idea to have one

  7. #7
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: Help on Color Accuracy

    Thats a broad question. Some people prefer high contrast, vivid, some desaturated ect. As long as your white balance is adjusted and you don't have strange tints ect. Plus printing also opens up a whole different situation.
    Personally I like the first one. It seems to have a bit more pop. But it is probably a little more pop than what was really in the scene. It's not so much about what's accurate but what fits your personal style and defines what you like as the artist of the shot. The camera is just a tool.
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

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  8. #8
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    Re: Help on Color Accuracy

    Thanks for posting this I have the same questions and found this very helpful. Photographing people is the hardest for me. I always seem to get strange skin tones

  9. #9
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    Re: Help on Color Accuracy

    Thanks for the insight guys. I guess photography is more art than science. My wife always says that I have a talent for framing a photo. I suppose that is more important than trying to match the "real" color and lighting.

    Thanks again, Jim

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