The following information was provided by Datacolor; we are sharing it for the benefit of our readers. Color calibration is a vital part of the photographic process and we personally rely on Datacolor products (purchased online/retail) for our own display calibration needs.
The need to have a calibrated monitor is of paramount importance, but very often overlooked. Every photographer knows they should be calibrating their monitor, yet many still don’t bother with it, seeing it as a complex and time-consuming task that will hinder instead of help their workflow process.
You want to be able to trust your monitor, as it’s the window to your digital photography and the gateway allowing you to view the true image. However, this would not be the case if you have a non-calibrated monitor, as your colors might not look how you intended due to skin tones being off, crucial shadow detail being missed or whites not being as pure as they should or need to be.
Making monitor calibration a key part of your photography workflow eliminates factors such as tiredness, human error, and the lack of dependability you will have by solely relying on your eyes to adjust the monitor correctly.
You want all on-screen images to match the initial shot taken, and using a screen calibrator is crucial to this process. Datacolor’s Spyder5 will measure light and color that appears from your screen, and make corrections to ensure the colors and details of your image are displayed as accurately as possible.
Using Different Monitors
Every monitor displays colors differently. Just because your images look accurate on one monitor doesn’t necessarily mean they will be the same on another screen you use. As they are not built ready-calibrated, their colors will in fact shift over time. Not calibrating properly and using different monitors can lead you to wasting unnecessary time editing, with your images on screen not displaying the true colors or details of your photos.
Using a colorimeter to an industry color reference standard not only gives you refined color accuracy for better print matching, but will eliminate the guesswork out of image editing, helping you to save time and efficiently manage your workflow better.
Staying up to date with calibration is vital, as making a regular habit of calibrating your display on a monthly basis will give you confidence your edited images will always match your prints best as possible. Also determining optimal monitor brightness, calibration will keep your monitor fresh with the display’s output intensity and stops you from needlessly buying abundant amounts of ink and paper.
Without calibrating your monitor, you can’t fully trust the colors you see on-screen, which then leads you to make questionable editing decisions, and waste time, paper and ink on re-printing as the color on your images don’t appear right.
To ensure printed images are as close of a match as to what you see on screen, an accurate color calibrated screen is the best starting place.
If you’re serious about photography, taking advantage of color management tools in your workflow to prepare your images will save you time, effort and money. Furthermore, if you’re planning to edit or view your images, using a reliable colorimeter to profile your monitor and calibrate any device can only help improve your process and photos.
To help photographers and videographers of all standards understand color management better, Datacolor has launched an extensive color management eBook, ‘Spyder5 eBook: Color management can be easy’. All six chapters are available for you to download here.