It’s spring. It’s Friday the 13th. The sun is shining, flowers are everywhere and I decided pink would be the theme of the day. From my window I see steam rising from the grass and I’m feeling pretty great. Hopefully you are too. These women – with big and bright splashes of pink or just a hint – fit how I feel about today.
At some point I should try to index all my photos by the color of clothing and accessories. It would be interesting to see if they change over time. I’ve already done a few color sets and today I decided to go with purple. The main reason is the first photo. Her name is Wendy and she’s a stylist in Boston. I think she looks just terrific and wanted to find a way to share her picture with everyone.
I’ve noticed a few times that some of the pictures I take and work hard on look totally different – and often like crap – once they are in the browser. Some people go on about choosing the right color space for the Web while others talk about complex exporting and saving processes.
Here’s the bottom line – I want my images (which go from raw to dng and finally out for the Web as jpg using sRGB) to look more or less the same in most cases. And it’s really disappointing when they don’t. The blame rests solely on the browser developers. sRGB is a standard color space – so why do some browsers make such a mess? Here are four versions of the same image captured from four different browsers:
Of course how they look to me is going to be different to how they look to you – since you’ll be looking at them with your own browser which will impart its own interpretation of color onto them. Safari apparently does color management – and Firefox does with a plug-in but how many casual Web surfers are going to bother? Is it that hard to simply build this into the browser to begin with? Is the thinking that some people don’t want accurate color? Hmmm.
To me it’s like a browser that decided to remove any adverbs or adjectives from writing. Or maybe one that had a built in thesaurus and would substitute random words. It just wouldn’t be acceptable. So why is it acceptable to do the same with visual images?
A couple of requests. First, which browser (based on the above – and realizing you can’t see the original image) does the best job? Second, gripe a lot about this whenever you can. It’s really annoying.