What is Color Management?


In digital imaging systems, Color Management includes the technology and best practices designed to create digital communications that ensure consistency of color representation across various devices. In digital workflows, information is saved, rendered and outputted. Color Management is used to correct and quantify a device’s color output so information between devices can be effectively used.



Above, looking at the chart of a photographer’s typical workflow you can see all the points in the process where information is either gathered or shared among devices, such as:


  • Your camera needs to be able to capture a scene you photograph in the way you intend it to
  • Your computer needs to accurately render that image on your display
  • You need to be able to effectively see the edits you make on an image
  • You need to be able to achieve consistent results from screen to print


Unfortunately, Color Management was not in place in the case illustrated above, resulting in the failure to meet the photographer’s expectations.


For a photographer, Color Management occurs in three different places in a workflow: Capture, Editing and Output (Print). Datacolor provides Color Management tools for each of these workflow processes:



Capture – Color Management helps your camera and editing software work together so you can capture the world around you with accuracy, pertaining to both color and lighting.


Color Management Tools:


  • Spyder Checkr Products – (SpyderCheckr, SpyderCheckr24): Calibration software analyzes the results of your test photo and instantly creates a profile which you then apply in your workflow with RAW import software such as Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom and Hasselblad Phocus, for automatic color correction.
  • SpyderCube – Accelerate RAW processing by taking one reference shot under any light condition to set the white balance, exposure, black level and brightness right from the start for your entire series of photos.



Editing – Color Management is used to calibrate your display, which is your window into your digital world. An accurate view of your digital world allows you to see your image accurately and make effective editing choices.


Color Management Tools:


  • SpyderX Products – (SpyderX Pro, SpyderX Elite) These are the fastest, most accurate and easiest-to-use monitor calibration tools from Datacolor. Advanced lens-based technology provides a higher level of color accuracy with more precise screen color, shadow detail and white balance. With SpyderX, you can be sure that what you see is what you get.



Output (Print) – Color Management is used to create profiles for papers and printers to help make prints that are consistent with your display and with your intended vision.


Color Management Tool:


  • SpyderPrint – Reduce wasted paper and ink with your printed output. Select any combination of printer, ink and media in the software to create any number of custom profiles to ICC Standards.



The expectation we have in the craft of photography (capture, edit and output) is that we are working in a “What You See is What You Get” (WYSIWYG) workflow. We are visual people who trust our eyes and our instincts for making our art. Using Color Management helps meet our workflow expectations and realize our photographic vision.


Learn more about Color Management by downloading our free Spyder-eBook with the following link: https://lp.datacolor.com/eBook-2018-EN.html.


Have questions? We’re here to help! Go to our Spyder support site (https://spyder-support.datacolor.com) and submit a ticket with your inquiry.