[Home]Color space

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Color spaces are a way of representing color as one a tuple? of numbers, typically as three or four values. Color spaces lend themselves to (in principle) reproducible representations of color, particularly in digital representations, such as digital printing or digital electronic display.

Some colorspaces in wide use are RGB, CMYK?, YUV? and HSV?.

RGB is typically used to describe additive color. Light is added together to create form from out of the darkness. RGB stores individual values for red, green and blue.

CMYK? is a subtractive color space used in the printing process. One starts with a white canvas, and uses ink to subtract color from white to create an image. CMYK? stores ink values for cyan, magenta, yellow and black.

YUV? is used in NTSC (North American) television broadcasts for historical reasons. [ Is it also used in PAL, for instance? ] YUV? stores a luminance value with both a blue and red chrominance value.

HSV? is often used by artists because it is often more natural to think about a color in terms of hue and saturation than in terms of additive or subtractive color components. HSV? stores a hue value, a saturation value and an intensity value.

There's an overview of the differences between RGB and CMYK? at http://www.pixelphoto.com/html/rgb_cmyk.html

Once you've decided which color space you want to work in, if you are working on a computer, you must then address the problem of color space encoding.


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Last edited September 26, 2001 11:26 pm by Mark Christensen (diff)