All Things Color for Film and Digital Cinema
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Color Blindness….. and color fatigue


An image from the ishihara test for color blindness

An image from the ishihara test for color blindness

Color Blindness and color fatigue has been the cause of quite a few conundrums in the grading suite.

We have all debated with friends, at some point in our lives, the perception of color between each other. “Do you see the blue of the sky the same way I do?” Someone who has been color blind all their lives takes their perception of color as gospel. 

What’s interesting is when grading a project over a few hours without a break or watching a feature film your internal reference point of what is a correct Balanced Image easily shifts. Technically it only takes 40 minutes for ones Color reference to become ‘reset’, taking on what is presented to you as the new correct reference. In a dark theatre without any external color reference point this is very easy. In this way I find TV grading and feature film grading two quite different beasts. In a darkened theatre our perception of subtle  changes in dark tones is much more than that of a typical television viewing environment where traditionally images are ‘pumped’ to jump off the screen.  

With this in mind can one be trained to be temporarily color blind in 40 mins?

I am currently making up some look up tables that emulate different color vision deficiencies. I’d love to use them some day in a film where perhaps one of the characters is color blind.

An interesting site is this one where you can type in a web address and it will show you how that page or image is percieved by someone deficient in say, Red/Green color.

Here is the site to go to to check your color vision.

Ishihara Test


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