Sunday, January 25, 2009

Laptop screens and colour palettes illustrating

Ask yourself how many times you have been sitting with a badly calibrated screen, colouring an illustration in Corel Photo-Paint, worked for ours, only to see how it comes out to bright or just simply with the wrong colours, especially when you look at it on a paper, or a better desktop screen. For this reason, one good thing is to make your own custom made colour palettes. So you are sure to work with the correct colours. I wrote about this earlier, click here, custome made palettes >>. There are several ways to make a custom made colour palette. Which is an especially good practise when you work on a laptop computer, because of the way a laptop screen show colour.

Me for example, I sit a lot working with my illustrations on a Laptop computer using Coreldraw or Photo-Paint and my Wacom intuos3 tablet. Either in a studio, or out on town at a café. Or just simply at home. And later check the colours on my desktop screen. And to add to the issue on colour using a Laptop, (this could be said about a desktop computer as well), if you sit in a room where there is a common light bulb, then you are sitting in a very yellow light surrounding. If you sit in an airport it might be a very blue light. And if you sit with a Laptop Sceen, then the washed out colour you thought you picked, show to be very bright. There are so many things to think about when you work with colours.

To sit in a completely grey neutral environment/room might not sound so fun, or you might not even have the possibility to either. So what is a good practise then when working with a Laptop?

I would say that one (but not the only) is to try to get hold of a PANTONE colour guide. Or any other colour guides. It doesnt have to be a Pantone. For example the Swedish Graphic Business Association have one they used to sell for a smaller price. My point is anyway to get a colour guide. With this colour guide you could get the correct RGB, CMYK or PANTONE colour settings/digits. With the colour guide at hand, using Corel Photo-Paint X4, go to the Palette Editor and make your own custom made colour palette. With "your" colours at hand (and of course you can add from the standard colour palettes), you can be more sure to get the correct colours in your illustration. You could then use that specific colour palette in Photo-Paint X4, and consequently not having to carry with you the complete Pantone colour guid. Which is just extra weight.

Stefan Lindblad
Illustrator & artist

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