Wednesday, 25 August 2010

It's all about Image(s)

You'd think the web and the numerous sites I'm on would be perfect for showcasing the pictures I take, and you might also consider that this is a pretty easy thing to achieve, e.g. upload picture, point people at it. Well, apparently it's not that simple because alot of the pictures I produced just didn't look right at all which was rather annoying and upsetting - particularly as I spent all that time calibrating my monitor and painstakingly tweaking the settings on the images to get something that looked right in Bibble.

After MUCH Googling and reading about similar problems it seems that I've run into the same issue that alot of photographers hit; we're the only ones with calibrated monitors and colour management enabled properly! That isn't the specific issue that is affecting me viewing my own pictures on the web but it's as a result of it; FireFox doesn't correctly render colours in image files by default, and even with this setting on it still needs to know the correct monitor profile to render to.

[ Note: this is based on my experience on Ubuntu Linux, I'm not sure if FireFox on Windows will hook into the default system monitor profile or not. I would be inclined to believe that browsers on Mac's would do all this automatically but it does assume that a correct profile is present ]

Anyway, there is a partial solution to this problem, I installed the Colour Management add-on for FireFox which meant I could easily change the relevant settings (they can be found using about:config I believe) and load the profiles I'd generated for my desktop and laptop machines.

Now, when I view my pictures on the web, the colours match those I set while processing them so at least I know that they are correct. The only problem is that I have no idea at all what they look like on anyone else's monitor so it might be that I'm the only one who gets to enjoy them properly! That is a little irksome when you're hoping people will say nice or constructive things about your images and, in actual fact they just look terrible to them!

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