Join Taz Tally for an in-depth discussion in this video Assigning color settings, part of Photoshop CS3 Color Correction.
- [Narrator] We're in the process of setting up Photoshop so that you can be able to use it as accurately and quickly as possible for doing color correction. And, our next step is to go into the Color Settings dialogue box and get that set up. And, this is really something you need to do before you even open your first image to even view it, nevermind edit it. So, Color Settings. In order to get to the Color Settings, we go underneath the Edit menu and down here, notice the keyboard shortcut Command+Shift+K on the Mac Control+Shift+K on Windows. It's one of those K sequences where Command+K is Preferences Command or Control+Shift+K for Color Settings.
And then, the third one, as we'll see, as part of that K sequence, is the Keyboard Shortcuts. And the whole K sequence we use for setting up Photoshop. So Command or Control+K for Prefernces, add a Shift to that to get the Color Settings. and then add the Option or Alt to get to the Keyboard Shortcuts. So, Color Setting dialogue box. Holy smokes, I don't know if you've ever looked at this dialogue box and then go, "Oh my gosh, quick, close that before I hurt myself". 'Cause this looks pretty darn complicated, no doubt about it. It looks that way, but it's not as bad as it appears.
In fact, for doing color correction, there's really two key things that you need to pay attention to, and they're right up here at the top underneath the Working Spaces, the RGB and the CMYK. The RGB Working Spaces and the CMYK Working Spaces, let's cover each one in turn. First, just a little intro into some color settings terminology, or, if you will, color management terminology. Three key terms to understand. One is color spaces. Second one is color gamut. Third is color profile. Well, color spaces are defined by the colorance that you're using.
Here, the two key color spaces are RGB and CMYK. And RGB is the color space in which we capture and view and usually edit our images in Photoshop. And CMYK is a color space in which we print. And in the Photoshop for Prepress course, we go into great detail how to correctly convert your images from RGB into CMYK. In this class, we're primarily working in RGB because we're talking about image capture and image editing and color correction, which is really best done in RGB.
So, when you're working in Photoshop, one of the most important things to set in this dialogue box, in terms of color correction, is your Working RGB Color Space. I mentioned there were three terms, color space, color gamut, and color profile. What we're assigning here is a color profile. A color profile is an actual file that has information concerning the color gamut of the device that you may be using, in this case, an RGB viewing device. And the color gamut refers to the range of reproducible colors.
So, these are all color profiles here. And there are a variety of different kinds of color profiles. There are generic profiles, which is what we have here. And this is called the Abobe RGB 1998 color space. And this is a generic profile that is available to everyone. You can also create custom profiles for your specific monitor, if you wanted to. What I'm going to recommend here is to use one of the more commonly available RGB color space profiles. Now, in Photoshop the default is set up as sRGB, which is a good color space for the web.
But, if you would like to perform color correction for a variety of different output devices, you're better off working in a larger RGB color space. When I say larger, I mean a color space that will display a wider range of colors than just those that we want to use on the web. So, we're going to choose a color space that has a larger gamut than just the web. This will encompass print and web and a variety of different output devices. And Adobe RGB 1998 is a color space that a lot of people are using. Print people, Prepress people, designers, even some web people are using Adobe RGB 1998 for working in, if they're multi-purposing their images.
So, assuming we're doing color correction for a variety of different devices, that's a good one to use. If you're just a webmeister and you're just doing web work, well, that's fine, you could use sRGB. But, typically most of us have to work in more than just one color space. And, by the way, if you're a photographer, what you can do, to give you color consistency throughout, in terms of your color profile, most digital cameras allow you to set up your initial color space. And, again, the default is sRGB on most cameras. But, most decent quality cameras will allow you to assign Adobe RGB 1998.
If you do that, and you have Adobe RGB 1998 set up here, you'll have color consistency in terms of how those images are going to be presented to you in your camera and on screen. And, they'll stay that way until you convert them to some other color space, either sRGB to take it to the web or a CMYK color space to go to press. Now, as far as the CMYK is concerned, this is not just useful to set up to go to press when you do your conversion. You can set up your Info palette, as we'll see, to display colors in a lot of different ways. And one of those ways, if you intend to do color correction for Prepress, is you might want to be checking in to see what those CMYK values are going to be when you convert your file to CMYK.
Well, whatever profile you set here is going to determine what those CMYK values are that you see in your color Info palette. And my suggestion here, at the very least, is to choose the printing press, say a sheet-fed press, and the kind of stock on which you intend to be printing ultimately. So, U.S. Sheetfed Coated. Or, as we discussed in great detail in the Photoshop for Prepress class, you can choose and create custom versions, you can create custom profiles, like we have here, for specific color management systems or for particular printing press, such as this Komori Coated Undercolor Removal 300%, 95%.
But, if you're not working with custom profiles, fine, just stick here. These are loaded into all versions of Photoshop. Choose a printing press like Sheetfed and then the type of stock on which you'll generally be printing. And that will give you CMYK values that will be pretty close to what you can expect when you actually convert and go to press. So, that's the basic color setting setup for working inside of Photoshop to give you color consistency. Every time you open up a file, you'll see it exactly the same way. And when you get done, you can just click the OK key. And those two working spaces are the two most important for you to set up.
- Setting up Photoshop CS3 for color correction
- Managing images with Bridge CS3
- Understanding color image fundamentals
- Evaluating images quickly and accurately
- Determining whether to correct or adjust
- Evaluating and fixing physical characteristics
- Fine-tuning brightness and contrast
- Proofing and gamut testing