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62

Fluorescent lights can flicker at twice the frequency of the current feeding them, which implies an entire cycle of the flicker will take between 1/100 and 1/120 second. During each cycle the light's intensity and its color temperature can change. Thus, if you're using a shutter speed of 1/100 second or faster, you might observe exactly these phenomena: ...


36

I'm going to give two answers which appear to be in conflict but which actually aren't: There are dark yellows and bright violets — we're just not used to seeing them. There aren't and can't be dark yellows or bright violets — and here's why. OK... 1. There are dark yellows and bright violets Color perception is relative. Here is a demonstration. If ...


33

It is related to a heated substance, albeit in a somewhat theoretical way. The substance is an ideal incandescent black body, which would radiate a given color within a given color space at a given temperature. The location within the color space vs. temperature is called the Planckian locus, and I don't claim to understand everything in that article, but ...


30

Given the current state of the art, the noise in the blue channel is a combination of cascading effects that work together to make the blue "look" the worst. First, with the Bayer pattern setup, there are twice as many green pixels as red or blue ones in the matrix*. This immediately puts the blue and red at a spacial disadvantage as compared to the green ...


28

Don't feel bad. Color theory isn't easy. First, many of your terms come from the many different ways to express a color. What we typically call a "color" (like, 'red' or 'orange') can be expressed in a variety of different ways: RGB: The combination of red, green, and blue light that forms a color. This is also called additive color (when you add more ...


27

The trick is very easy, actually: bring your own lighting. The existing orange sodium-vapor lighting is missing important parts of color spectrum, so those colors will never be reflected from anything. Filtering will only further reduce the colors available for recording. The "good" examples in the question look very much like one would get with a couple ...


25

Check out this image by Jeff Schewe from wikipedia. It's a 2D slice of what's really a three-dimensional space, but it makes the basic concept clear: So: sRGB is a subset of AdobeRGB, which is a subset of ProPhoto RGB. You can also see how ProPhoto RGB extends outside of the curved shape which represents visible colors. And you can see how AdobeRGB is a ...


25

I think "several fluorescent fixtures that I use to light my studio" is the key here. I'm guessing that the very high ISOs are accompanied by very short shutter speeds. Fluorescent lights cycle, and there are color variations within the cycle. Repeat your test with incandescent light or sunlight (or a strobe with high-speed sync). See Do fluorescent ...


24

Different light sources have different color temperature and when you want natural colors, you need to correct them for that particular light source. Basically white balance says what is rendered as neutral gray. You can find a more thorough explanation here: http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials/white-balance.htm. Wikipedia lists different light ...


23

sRGB is the most common color-space used anywhere. AdobeRGB is a wider color-space which can represent more colors but with less precision when looking at the colors which overlap sRGB. Neither color-space really matters when shooting RAW. The embedded thumbnail or preview within a RAW file may be affected by the choice of color-space though, so keeping ...


23

I think there are subjects and shots that work much better in monochrome than in color. There are others that don't. For pictures where the color itself is a major component of the picture (e.g., rainbows, sunsets) color is essentially always preferable. In other cases, however, a monochrome image can can eliminate distractions and do a much better job of ...


23

Wikipedia's introductory statement on color temperature relates them quite well: The color temperature of a light source is the temperature of an ideal black-body radiator that radiates light of comparable hue to that of the light source. Black body radiators are an idealized concept, that radiate an energy spectrum with a peak intensity at a frequency ...


22

Fluorescent lights are terrible news for photography, and this is just one of the reasons! They give out light which is missing a big chunk of the red spectrum, which can make skin tones look greenish and unhealthy, they are usually different colours from each other even if the tubes are the same type, and they change colour during the power cycle! Your ...


22

If Matt's answer about the nature of vibrance is correct (and the Adobe documentation agrees), you may be able to obtain a similar effect in GIMP. However, I don't have any Adobe software, so I can't judge how closely this actually matches Adobe's effect. Use Colors -> Components -> Decompose, decompose to Hue/Saturation/Value or Hue/Saturation/Luminance. ...


21

mattdm has it spot on - it's not the colour temperature that matters, it's the width of the spectrum. Here are some examples that illustrate the difference nicely. Here's an image I shot a while ago at a bonfire. Straight of camera, without the white balance set it looks massively orange: And here's an image shot just now under sodium vapour streetlights ...


21

The question is whether the colors and tones are okay; this is clearly very subjective, and the answer for many people is a shrug and a "sure". But this is your image, and you're the artist, so the question is: does it match your intent? Are you happy with it? Does it communicate what you want to communicate? And, without more information from you, we ...


20

There are many different types of color blindness. Which one are you? In my case I have serious issues discriminating small differences in hues in the red, orange, yellow, green region of the spectrum (deuteranomaly, I read). This happens to me pretty often; invited for dinner last weekend, I identified the hostess's new wall color as orange, not yellow. ...


20

I'm color blind (or rather have a color vision deficiency). Specifically my eyes are less sensetive to red light than other colors. I can't really say that I suffer from it. It makes it harder to pick lingonberries, and I have problem reading tiny red text on a black background, but that's about it. I might perhaps photograph red objects differently, as I ...


20

A JPEG may start out with 8 bits per R, G and B channel, but when stored in the JPEG it is stored very differently, where there is no real "bit depth" but instead values are stored as frequency coefficients of a given precision. In JPEG what's more relevant is the quantization rate, which affects how much information is thrown away during the quantization ...


20

The type of lighting, the way the subject reflects light, presence of haze, the lens design and coatings and the dyes used in the sensor all have an influence on the vividness of colours in an image. But the major factor, which outweighs all of these by a significant margin, is how the image is processed. Either in camera or on a PC the saturation settings ...


20

There's really no such thing as an "unaltered" photograph. Unless you're going to pin a piece of undeveloped film to the wall. Certain film stock is designed to give exaggerated colours and there are film processing techniques (e.g. cross processing) to do the same. A digital camera cannot detect colour directly, only intensity. Sensors have a mosaic of ...


19

When discussing the number of colors perceptible to the human eye, I tend to refer to the 2.4 million colors of the CIE 1931 XYZ color space. It is a fairly solid, scientifically founded number, although I do admit it may be limited in context. I think it may be possible for the human eye to be sensitive to 10-100 million distinct "colors" when referring to ...


19

The tint slider takes care of a couple things. First off, from a color perception standpoint, there are two major axes that the cones of our eyes base color perception on: blue/yellow and magenta/green. There are some specific nuances related to these axes, however the most important is that they represent opposite colors that the human eye can not see ...


18

I'd say it's worth it. My friend Nick has written a fairly decent overview of the zone system which uses an example that was taken in colour on his digital SLR.


18

Color film contains several layers, each sensitive to a different color of light (red, green, blue). When exposed to light and developed, these produce magenta, cyan and yellow colors in the negative. The printing process works in a similar way. This is similar to the way digital sensors work, in that there are filters to exclude all but one color of ...


18

This is an observation made by many when they start to shoot in raw after being used to JPEG. You have to understand that what you see with a raw image is exactly what came off the sensor when you took the picture. Digital cameras provide all kinds of on board post processing such as noise reduction, sharpening, saturation and contrast settings which are ...


18

The reason is that the red light is a light source, therefore it's much brighter than any other parts of the scene. The pixels showing it are overblown - meaning there was more light coming than your camera sensor could capture. The light is not pure red, it emits enough green and blue light to blow these color channels of pixels too. The hood is just ...


17

This is a difficult problem as in general those orange sodium vapour lamps give you little to work with, but there are some options Lighting varies with location, it's probably the case that the lighting in the second two examples was better (more sources, broader spectrum), so move around and compare results. By careful editing you can sometimes get a ...


16

It is difficult to answer the question accurately without knowing what you really photographed. But what you have reported is very similar to what many photographers experience when photographing red flowers. This has a two fold cause. First the CMOS sensor in the camera has an extended spectral response extending into the near infrared. See the diagram ...



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